90 Astonishing Mayan Tattoo Ideas, Designs & Their History

Immerse yourself in the beauty of a lost civilization by etching their story on your skin.

Written by , MSc Manjari Uppal MSc linkedin_icon Experience: 3 years
Edited by , BTech Anjali Sayee BTech linkedin_icon Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , MA (English) Shreya Mukherjee MA (English) linkedin_icon Experience: 2 years
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If you think intricate, elaborate body art is a modern trend, think again. The Mayans were way ahead. Mayan tattoos are not only a tribute to an ancient art form but also a connection to a rich cultural heritage. The modern interpretation of Mayan tattoos features intricate patterns and indigenous motifs of Pre-Columbian Central America. These designs are typically etched in simple, bold black ink. If you are drawn to spiritual symbols, mythical creatures, or historical motifs, here are gorgeous and unique Mayan-inspired tattoos for you. Buckle up, scroll down, and find that one tattoo that best aligns with you!

Meaning Of Mayan Tattoos

Mayan tattoos carry a lot of symbolic meanings that are deeply rooted in the culture’s spiritual beliefs and reverence for nature. Back then, Mayan warriors and nobles would get powerful animals etched on their skin, connecting them to the animal’s essence. For instance,

  • Jaguars were considered sacred and symbolized bravery, stealth, and power.
  • Eagles represent foresight and guidance, illuminating the path ahead.
  • Owls were seen as mystic guides of the afterlife.

Similarly, Mayan tattoos also often feature gods and deities. Each god governed different aspects of life, and tattooing their image on one’s body was seen as a sacrifice to gain their favor. Some examples are:

  • Kukulkan, the feathered serpent god of spirituality and wisdom
  • Kinich Ahau, the sun god
  • Ix Chel, the goddess of fertility and medicine

These tattoos highlight the deep connection between the divine and the natural world in Mayan culture. Modern age Mayan tattoos also feature architectural designs, Mayan glyph languages such as Totsil or Mam, and their art, inspired by their heritage. Read about the historical narrative behind Mayan tattoos in the next section.

History Of Mayan Tattoos

Mayan tattoos date back to the ancient civilization that thrived between 250 CE and 900 CE in Southern Mexico, Guatemala, and Northern Belize. These tattoos were deeply symbolic and connected to the gods, animals, and powers depicted. In Mayan culture, tattoos indicated social status, accomplishments, battle power, bravery, and spiritual dedication. Additionally, The Maya, people of the Mayan culture, would also mark criminals with a tattoo for each of their crimes.

The tattooing process itself was a significant ritual and a symbol of commitment and strength. Interestingly, both men and women of the culture were prompted to get tattoos. Today, modern interpretations of Mayan tattoos continue to honor these traditions, with designs inspired by Mayan glyphs, gods, and architecture, keeping the cultural legacy alive. Scroll down to explore these eye-catching tattoo ideas.

90 Astonishing Mayan Tattoo Ideas

Mayan-inspired body art offers a blend of cultural significance and artistic beauty, from symbolic animal motifs and powerful deities to intricate geometric patterns and historical symbols. Each tattoo tells a unique story and captures the essence of this ancient civilization. Check out some stunning designs below:

I. Ancient Mayan Tattoos

1. Ancient Mayan Tattoo On The Arm

An ancient Mayan tattoo on a woman’s arm
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The arm is a perfect place for a Mayan tattoo as it has a lot of space, allowing you to etch an elaborate sleeve design. These tattoos often feature common motifs like spirals, geometric design, and interlocking shapes, all representing the universe’s order and harmony. This design also features small gods and warrior silhouettes. These tattoos symbolize protection, power, and connection to the divine.

2. Ancient Mayan Tattoo On The Leg

An ancient Mayan tattoo on a woman’s leg
Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

For the leg, apart from the intricate geometric motifs, one can etch designs like jaguars, serpents, or celestial symbols, representing agility, transformation, and cosmic balance. These tattoos are rich with detailed patterns and perfect for those who want to embody the resilience and adventurous spirit of the Mayan culture.

II. Mayan Calendar Tattoos

3. Mayan Calendar Tattoo On The Leg

A Mayan calendar tattoo on a woman’s leg
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The Mayan calendar tattoo design features intricate circular patterns filled with detailed symbols and motifs, such as the sunstone, glyphs representing days and deities, and interconnected lines. These elements symbolize the harmony of the universe and the passage of time. This tattoo is worth appreciating just for its artistic value.

4. Mayan Calendar Tattoo On The Arm

A Mayan calendar tattoo on a woman’s arm
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A Mayan calendar tattoo on the arm is a bold choice for those who appreciate detailed and meaningful body. This intricate design requires time and skill from an expert tattoo artist with an impressive portfolio. This design features the intricate cycles of time and the cosmos, signifying balance, knowledge, and the flow of time. The circle with the glyphics is supposed to represent Earth with tents, trees, and mountains on the outside. It is perfect for anyone wanting to showcase their deep connection to ancient cultures and the universe’s mysteries.

III. Mayan Warrior Tattoos

5. Mayan Warrior Tattoo On The Shoulder

A Mayan warrior tattoo on a woman’s shoulder
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

This tattoo features a Mayan female warrior on the shoulder. It is a fine-line black work, featuring intricate line and shade work techniques, and portrays the resilience and strength of a warrior. The feathered headgear and ear accessories add to the fierce and bold appearance. This design symbolizes courage and bravery.

6. Mayan Warrior Tattoo On The  Arm

A Mayan warrior tattoo on a woman’s arm
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

This tattoo depicts the strength and determination of ancient female warriors. The elaborate detailing and highlighting deserve to be applauded. The intricate black work and elaborate feathered headgear signify courage and honor. This is a perfect choice for those who value bravery and resilience.

IV. Mayan Jaguar Tattoo

7. Mayan Jaguar Tattoo On The Back

A Mayan calendar tattoo on a woman’s back
Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

The Mayan word for Jaguar is Bahlam or B’alam. The Maya revered jaguars as guardians of the forests and as symbols of power, strength, and protection. This tattoo is a tribute to that ancient reverence for nature, making it a powerful symbol of strength and spirituality. The intricate design depicts the fierce jaguar spread across the upper back, embodying strength and protection. This tattoo is perfect for those bold souls out there!

8. Mayan Jaguar Tattoo On The Arm

A Mayan jaguar tattoo on a woman’s arm
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

This black-inked Mayan jaguar tattoo, boldly displayed on the arm, depicts the majestic and powerful spirit of the jaguar. In Mayan culture, the jaguar was associated with warriors and royalty, embodying qualities of courage, protection, and prowess in battle. It is for those who seek strength, courage, and connection to the natural world.

V. Mayan Tribal Tattoo

9.  Mayan Tribal Tattoo On The Shoulder

A Mayan tribal tattoo on a woman’s shoulder
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Do you want to rock a Mayan tribal tattoo on your shoulder that is gonna turn heads and shout out your heritage and adventurous streak? You can ink geometric patterns and symbols inspired by Mayan art, symbolizing nature and spirituality as seen here. The way those designs flow with the curves of the shoulder creates a dynamic and eye-catching tattoo. Each lower band depicts a specific scenery such as the mountains. The top design features an architectural blueprint of sorts.

10.  Mayan Tribal Tattoo On The Leg

A Mayan tribal tattoo on a man’s leg
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Mayan tribal motifs pack a punch, mixing culture, spirituality, and cool art vibes. With bold lines and geometric shapes inspired by ancient Mayan designs, these tattoos are elaborate stories etched on the skin, serving as reminders of where we come from and what makes us unique. The leg has plenty of room for you to go big and detailed, making a statement that is loud and proud.

VI. Mayan Tattoo Sleeves

11. Symbolic Mayan Tattoo Sleeve

A symbolic Mayan tattoo sleeve
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If you are into carrying the stories and wisdom of the Maya wherever you go, this sleeve has got you covered. Typically sleeve tattoos feature a fusion of Mayan symbols, gods, and celestial elements, all done in simple thick and bold black ink. They signify a profound respect for heritage, a quest for knowledge, and a desire for spiritual enlightenment.

12. Intricate Mayan Tattoo Sleeve

An intricate Mayan tattoo sleeve
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This blackwork sleeve tattoo is a visual buffet for anyone fascinated by ancient cultures. This design intertwines black lines and geometric shapes, weaving them together to form a captivating story and depict different facets of Mayan civilization. And let us not forget, wearing this sleeve is not just about style, it is a shout-out to your love for art and history.

VII. Guatemalan Mayan Tattoos

13.  Guatemalan Mayan Tecun Uman Tattoo

 

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This tattoo is a proud symbol for those rocking their Guatemalan and Mayan heritage.

It showcases Tecun Uman’s portrait in black ink on the bicep with beautiful shading that adds depth to his face. Tecun Uman was the last leader of the K’iche Maya people in the Guatemalan Highlands who battled Spanish conquistadors during the conquest. This tattoo is the ultimate ode to him and may signify having a warrior spirit.

14. Guatemalan Mayan Tikal Tattoo

This tattoo pays homage to the awe-inspiring Tikal temples, iconic symbols of Mayan and Guatemalan heritage. This design features a blackwork temple inked on the bicep, with a backdrop of the moon transitioning into the sun, an eclipse casting sharp rays onto the temple. A special shout out to the use of negative space to depict the glint and rays of the sun. This tattoo screams love for Mayan culture and a deep respect for its history, making it a no-brainer for anyone repping their Guatemalan roots.

VIII. Mayan Sun Tattoo

15. Mayan Sun Tattoo On The Shoulder

Mayan sun tattoo on a woman’s shoulder
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This tattoo features the radiant face of the Mayan Sun god, known as Kinich Ahau, on the shoulder. It is a symbol of strength, renewal, and connection to nature. It is like carrying a piece of sunshine with you everywhere. If you are all about soaking up those sunny vibes, this tattoo is totally your jam.

16. Mayan Sun Tattoo On The Back

Mayan sun tattoo on a woman’s back
Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

Getting a tattoo of Kinich Ahau on the back is a game-changer. This striking design features the face of the Mayan sun god depicted as the sun, spreading warmth and energy. It symbolizes strength, renewal, and a deep connection to nature. The sheer intricate detailing of this tattoo deserves to be praised. If you love elaborate odes to Mayan deities, this tattoo has got your name on it!

IX. Mayan Pyramid Tattoo

17. Mayan Pyramid And Serpent Tattoo

This design features a black Mayan pyramid encircled by a serpent biting its tail, symbolizing eternity. In Mayan culture, serpents represent rebirth and power.

The blacked out temple stairs really makes the design pop. This tattoo is a striking piece for those into ancient symbolism. You can get this design done on your arm or back.

18. Mayan Pyramid Tattoo On The Arm

This tattoo is a nod to ancient history. This ink celebrates and pays tribute to the monumental structures the Mayans built back in the day. It is perfect for those who appreciate the rich heritage of the Mayans and want to carry it with them wherever they go. It is a symbol of strength, resilience, and connection to the past.

X. Mayan Skull Tattoo

19. Mayan Skull Tattoo On The Bicep

Mayan skull tattoo on a woman’s bicep
Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

Skulls symbolize life, death, and transformation in the Mayan culture. This tattoo showcases a skull with intricate headgear, each motif telling a story of heritage and wisdom. Its black eye sockets add a mysterious touch, representing the depths of ancestral knowledge. This tattoo is for those embracing the Mayan spirit, embodying resilience and honoring the mysteries of existence.

20. Mayan Skull Tattoo On The Leg

Mayan skull tattoo on a man’s leg
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How about a Mayan skull tattoo on the leg? It is for those who dig a little edge and a whole lot of Mayan mystique. Not simple in the least, this intricate skull has those Mayan motifs tucked in, adding a touch of ancient flair. But watch out for that creepy smile. It gives off creepy vibes, with the nose and eye sockets dipped in deep black ink.

XI. Female Mayan Tattoos

21. Mayan Female Warrior Tattoo

A Mayan female warrior tattoo on a woman’s arm
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A Mayan female warrior tattoo is a tribute to the fierce spirit of ancient Mayan women. This tattoo features a warrior princess adorned in her intricate armor with strength and grace. The design features some intricate tattoo techniques such as line work, highlight shading, gradient shading, and shadowing. This tattoo is a shout-out to all fierce ladies throughout history for courage, strength, and resilience.

22. Female Mayan Tattoo On The Neck

A traditional Mayan jaguar tattoo on a woman’s shoulder blade
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This tattoo features a bold design that wraps around the neck with elaborate patterns and intricate motifs. The thick black ink lines creates a beautiful necklace of sorts. With every twist and turn, those mesmerizing details catch the eye, making heads turn and jaws drop. It is for the bold spirits who embrace their cultural heritage and are not afraid to stand out in the crowd.

XII. Traditional Mayan Jaguar Tattoo

23. Traditional Mayan Jaguar Tattoo On The Shoulder

A traditional Mayan jaguar tattoo on a woman’s shoulder blade
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This tattoo showcases a fierce and captivating traditional Mayan jaguar, placed on the shoulder blade. It is a full-body masterpiece in black ink, with the jaguar’s teeth bared in a powerful roar. In Mayan culture, the jaguar represents strength, protection, and the relationship between humans and nature.

24. Traditional Mayan Jaguar Tattoo On The Leg

A traditional Mayan jaguar tattoo on a woman’s leg
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This Mayan tattoo of a jaguar, inked on the leg, is like a wild and bold statement for all to see. The design is a masterpiece in black ink, especially the jaguar’s fierce eyes and powerful bared teeth. This ink screams protection, tapping into nature’s raw energy. It is like wearing your wild side proudly, wherever you go.

XIII. Symbolic Mayan Tattoo Designs

25. Mayan Turtle Symbol Tattoo

A Mayan turtle symbol tattoo on a woman’s wrist
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Mayan symbols, like mountains, trees, and more, have serious deep meanings. This tattoo showcases a black ink turtle with motifs running in its shell. In Mayan culture, the turtle holds deep significance, representing longevity, wisdom, and protection. This design is for those who dig those qualities and want a little reminder of resilience and inner strength.

26.  Mayan Sun Symbol Tattoo

A Mayan sun symbol tattoo on a woman’s ankle
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This sun symbol tattoo is for those who dig positivity, growth, and just living life to the fullest. In Mayan culture, the sun is the ultimate symbol of power and enlightenment. The sun is very reverent in the culture as it plays an important part in agriculture. This design may symbolize warmth, royalty, and life as well.

27. Mayan Face Tattoo

A Mayan tattoo on a woman’s face and neck
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This is not your typical ink! This rad black work design starts near the forehead and then wraps around the neck to create a Mayan deity, filled in with symbols and glyphs. It boldly runs along the collarbone, making a statement. It is perfect for the individuals who love to stand out.

28. Mayan Neck Tattoo

A Mayan necklace tattoo on a woman’s neck
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This tattoo, featuring an intricate black band that wraps around the neck, is a bold statement of cultural pride and personal strength. The geometric gem-like shape below the band adds depth and significance to the design. This ink is not just about style, but about carrying the wearer’s Mayan roots and values wherever they go.

29. Mayan Chest Tattoo

A Mayan tattoo on a man’s chest
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For the chest, you have got endless options. You can get a deity, like the majestic Kukulkan or Itzamna. Add in motifs around the figure like a Mayan calendar or architectural blueprint. These tattoos are for those who love a bit of ancient mystique and want to rock some meaningful ink.

30. Mayan Snake Tattoo

This tattoo is next level! It showcases Kukulkan, the feathered serpent deity, slithering down the arm. The design features a stony texture for that extra oomph. It is for those who love a bit of ancient mythology and want a bold piece of art. This tattoo signifies a connection to Mayan spirituality and a reverence for the power of transformation.

31. Mayan Hand Tattoo

A Mayan tattoo on a woman’s hand
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This tattoo showcases a black-inked Mayan turtle tattoo on the back of the hand. In Mayan culture, turtles symbolize longevity, wisdom, and protection. If you want to showcase your connection to these ancient values, the hand is a perfect spot, as it is always visible. You can show it off with confidence, proudly displaying your heritage and the strength it represents.

32. Mayan Jaguar Warrior Tattoo

This tattoo of a Mayan jaguar warrior is perfect for individuals who embrace their inner strength and want to honor the fierce spirit of Mayan warriors. It features a skull rocking a fierce jaguar headgear. The skull’s eye sockets and nose are shaded black, with its teeth on full display. The forehead is covered in jaguar teeth, and the ears have long feather accessories. This bold tattoo is bound to make a statement!

33. Guatemalan Mayan Warrior Tattoo

A Guatemalan Mayan warrior tattoo on a woman’s upper arm
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This blackwork tattoo on the upper arm features a stoic Mayan warrior, symbolizing strength and heritage. The warrior is adorned with an elaborate feathered crown-like headdress, embodying power and nobility. Striking black lines and motifs running all over the design enhance the warrior’s fierce expression and intricately detailed elements. It is a powerful tribute for those who want to honor their rich cultural heritage and carry the spirit of Mayan warriors with them.

34. Mayan God Tattoo

A Mayan god tattoo on a woman’s bicep
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This tattoo features the Mayan goddess Acat. She was revered as the deity of tattoos, skin painting, and the underworld. So, getting her inked on your body is like an ode to body art, tapping into ancient rituals and embracing life’s changes. This design features the goddess with feather headgear and intricate patterns.

35. Mayan Back Tattoo

A Mayan tattoo on a woman’s back
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When it comes to a Mayan back tattoo, the possibilities are endless! You can opt for any of the many motifs related to this rich culture, like a majestic pyramid, intricate calendar, or fierce warrior, whatever speaks to your soul. Also, the back is a perfect spot for larger and intricate designs. Take this tattoo, for instance, it features the Mayan sun god. The sharp, detailed features like eyes, nose, and lips are right in the middle of an elaborate design with motifs and patterns covering the whole upper back. It is a powerful symbol of vitality, energy, and divine power.

36. Mayan Symbols Tattoo

This tattoo features the Mayan symbol for family, celebrating familial ties intricately woven into a design that speaks volumes. For those who cherish family above all else, this ink signifies love and connection. It is a beautiful reminder of where you come from and the support that surrounds you. You can rock it on your forearm, symbolizing strength and unity as you navigate life’s journey.

37. Mayan Eagle Tattoo

A Mayan eagle tattoo on a woman’s calf
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In Mayan culture, the eagle symbolizes power, courage, and divine protection. This design of a Mayan-inspired eagle crafted in bold black ink is placed on the calf. Its form is stylized, taking cues from Mayan iconography, and showcases intricate feather details. The stunning shade work and intricate detailing are a sign of an expert tattooist.

38. Small Mayan Tattoos

A small Mayan tattoo on a woman’s shoulder
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This Mayan-inspired blackwork tattoo is placed delicately on the shoulder. The design showcases a detailed Mayan motif face, capturing the essence of ancient wisdom. Whether depicting a deity or an ancestor, this expressive face brings guidance and wisdom to the table.

39. Mexican Mayan Tattoos

A Mexican Mayan tattoo on a woman’s back
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This bold blackwork tattoo spreads across the back like a historical work of art! It is like a whole story unfolding. At its heart, a captivating half-circular pattern draws you in, surrounded by Mayan-inspired motifs that weave together in a mesmerizing dance. Towards the end, typical Mexican square motifs add a touch of cultural flair. Each motif stands for something important in Mexican culture, showing how everything’s connected in the grand scheme of life.

40. Mayan Serpent Tattoo

A Mayan serpent tattoo on a man’s back
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This tattoo features Kukulkan, all fierce and fiery, covering one side of the back. Its claws are sharp, exuding power and strength. The tongue, spitting out flames, is adorned with intricate Mayan motifs that add depth and meaning to the design. This tattoo signifies resilience and spiritual growth.

41. Female Mayan Warrior Tattoo

A female Mayan warrior tattoo on a woman’s arm
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This tattoo showcases a fierce Mayan female warrior boldly inked in blackwork style. It is a badge of honor, showcasing strength and resilience for all to see. This warrior, embodying courage and unwavering defense, is decked out in an elaborate feathered headdress and a statement ear ornament. This design helps the wearer channel their inner warrior spirit.

42. Mayan Turtle Tattoo

A Mayan turtle tattoo on a woman’s feet
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This detailed foot tattoo features a turtle, the Mayan symbol of resilience and creation. This turtle, designed with geometric patterns decorating its shell, is all about those ancient creation myths. It is a reminder of the strength and persistence needed to navigate life’s twists and turns.

43. Mayan Goddess Tattoo

A Mayan goddess tattoo on a woman’s back
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This tattoo done in bold black ink features a stunning Mayan goddess on the back in all her glory. She is a vision of power and grace with a stoic expression and a grand headgear covering the upper back. She is a symbol of strength and femininity, decked out in armor and rocking traditional ear accessories.

44. Mayan God Of Death Tattoo

This tattoo features Ah Puch, the Mayan god of death, who holds immense significance in the Mayan culture. This tattoo pays homage to this powerful deity and showcases his skeletal features. This ink represents transformation and the inevitability of mortality. It is a reminder to live fully and fearlessly.

45. Mayan Forearm Tattoo

A Mayan mask tattoo on a woman’s forearm
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This incredible tattoo of a Mayan mask is rightfully inked on the upper arm, a place for all to see. The mask has this stoic face and may represent a specific god or mythical deity that brings guidance or inner strength. Either way, it signifies seeking guidance and protection.

46. Mayan Indian Tattoos

A Mayan Indian tattoo on a man’s arm
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This tattoo showcases a skull warrior adorned in intricate black ink. The warrior is wearing traditional Native American headgear adorned with feathers, symbolizing honor and tradition. The armor symbolizes protection and strength, while the headgear speaks of tradition and honor. This tattoo serves as a tribute to indigenous cultures and their rich heritage.

47. Aztec Mayan Tattoo

An Aztec Mayan tattoo on a woman’s arm
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This tattoo combines elements from two ancient civilizations, blending their rich cultural heritage into a striking design. It features a deity with intricate patterns and symbols from Aztec and Mayan mythology. This tattoo is for those who honor Mesoamerican traditions and seek to carry their legacy forward.

48. Mayan Kukulkan Tattoo

An Aztec Mayan tattoo on a woman’s arm
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Kukulkan, the ancient war serpent Mayan god, is a powerful being to reckon with. He symbolizes wisdom, enlightenment, and knowledge. The god is generally depicted as a mix of a bird and a serpent, signifying the dual nature of people, emotions, and life. But, there is a tale where he, as a winged serpent, tried to speak to the sun god. Sadly, the god burnt his tongue. Hence, there are many depictions of Kukulkan as a dragon. Clearly, though the design is in simple black ink, it means a lot.

49. Salvadoran Mayan Tattoos

A Salvadoran Mayan tattoo on a woman’s back
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This epic tattoo covering the whole back is a fusion of Mayan inspiration and Salvadoran identity. It is like wearing a piece of history and culture and celebrating your roots in style! The mesmerizing circular mandala-like pattern draws you in with distinct glyphs and Mayan motifs below that add depth. Glyphs are a big deal in Mesoamerican art as they played a crucial role in recording history, religion, and societal structures.

50. Honduras Mayan Tattoos

A Honduras Mayan tattoo on a woman’s back
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Honduras Mayan tattoos draw inspiration from the rich history of the Copan ruins. This tattoo features an intricate temple design along with elaborate stairs. This tattoo signifies a deep connection to the cultural heritage of Honduras and the spiritual significance of the ancient ruins.

51. Mayan Pattern Tattoo

A Mayan pattern tattoo on a woman’s wrist
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Mayan  designs often feature intricate geometric shapes, spirals, and glyphs, weaving together a complex tapestry of ancient symbolism. This tattoo particularly shines on the forearm or calf, where the patterns flow naturally. It signifies a deep appreciation for Mayan culture, representing themes of balance, harmony, and connection to the cosmos. Perfect for those who admire ancient civilizations and want to carry a piece of that history with them.

52. Mayan Leg Sleeve Tattoo

A Mayan leg sleeve tattoo
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This intricate design covers the entire leg, featuring detailed Mayan symbols and geometric patterns. Each element tells a story, representing themes of strength, spirituality, and connection to the natural world. This tattoo is a bold statement of cultural pride and artistic appreciation and it signifies a deep connection to heritage and a love for meaningful art.

53. Mayan Temple Tattoo Design

A Mayan temple tattoo on a woman’s arm
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This tattoo is perfect for those who want to showcase their appreciation for Mayan culture and their connection to ancient traditions. This tattoo features a stunning black-inked Mayan temple spanning the arm with a mandala on the hand. The temple represents ancient wisdom and spiritual power, while the mandala adds a touch of beauty and balance.

54. Mayan Leg Tattoo

A Mayan temple tattoo on a woman’s arm
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You can get elaborate Mayan culture on the leg. Think intricate patterns, powerful deities or even animals and birds. This tattoo design features a black-inked owl. In Mayan culture, the owl, known as Moan, is a symbol of death and the underworld. This tattoo has detailed feathers with motifs running within, signifying mystery, wisdom, and a connection to the spiritual realm.

55. Mayan Armband Tattoo

A Mayan armband tattoo on a woman’s arm
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This design features intricate geometric patterns wrapped around the bicep. Each symbol tells a story of strength, spirituality, and heritage. You can go for black ink or experiment with different colors. This tattoo is perfect for celebrating cultural pride with every flex.

56. Mayan Moon Tattoo

A Mayan moon tattoo on a woman’s back
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This captivating design features a moon with eyes, nose, and lips at the center, surrounded by intricate circular Mayan motifs. In Mayan culture, the moon holds significant importance, often associated with the goddess IxChel who symbolizes fertility, water, and medicine. This tattoo is perfect for anyone who loves the mystical side of Mayan heritage and wants to carry a piece of its ancient wisdom with them.

57. Mayan Princess Tattoo

A Mayan princess tattoo on a woman’s back
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This tattoo is all about honoring feminine strength. It features a black-ink portrait of a fierce warrior princess with detailed ear accessories and stunning feathered headgear. This tattoo is a powerful symbol of empowerment and cultural pride.

58. Aztec Mayan Tattoo Sleeve

An Aztec Mayan tattoo sleeve on a woman’s arm
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This tattoo sleeve covers the entire arm, featuring a blend of intricate Aztec and Mayan symbols. You can get Mayan deities, calendars, and geometric patterns. It is a bold and meaningful way to showcase cultural pride and personal values. The vibrant colors add a nice pop to the design, bringing it life.

59. Mayan Shoulder Tattoo

A Mayan tattoo on a woman’s shoulder
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If you love cultural depth and want to show off your unique style, this tattoo is a great choice. This tattoo has a mandala design that is perfect for free spirits. The bold placement really makes the Mayan motifs pop. It is all about harmony, balance, and connecting with ancient wisdom.

60. Mayan 13 Tattoo

A Mayan13 tattoo on a man’s bicep
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The number 13 is a sacred number representing completion and connection to the divine in Mayan culture. This minimalist design showcasing three dots and two vertical lines, is perfect for those who appreciate subtlety yet want to carry a powerful symbol of spiritual wholeness and cosmic harmony.

61. Mayan Hieroglyphics Tattoos

Mayan languages consist of hieroglyphics that tell an ancient tale. They were used to record history, astronomy, and rituals. Each glyph represents sounds or words, making them perfect for those who appreciate ancient wisdom and cultural depth. Etching these glyphs to tell your own story pays tribute to a rich heritage.

62. Mayan Bat Tattoo

A Mayan bat tattoo on a woman’s back
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This tattoo showcases a bat etched in black ink on the back. The bat wings depicted here have detailed feathers and intricate Mayan motifs within. In Mayan culture, the bat symbolizes rebirth and transformation.  It is a bold statement for anyone connected to the mystical and ancient symbolism of the Maya.

63. Mayan Glyph Tattoo

A Mayan glyph tattoo on a woman’s arm
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Glyph tattoos are like little pieces of Mayan history inked on your skin. These glyphs represent everything from dates and deities to stories and important events. It features intricate symbols used in Mayan writing. Getting one is like carrying a piece of ancient wisdom with you.

64. Mayan Bird Tattoo

A Mayan quetzal bird tattoo on a woman’s arm
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This tattoo showcases a Mayan quetzal bird inked boldly on the bicep. This majestic bird symbolizes freedom and beauty and holds a special place in Mayan lore. It is associated with the god Quetzalcoatl.  This tattoo is a tribute to nature’s finest.

65. Mayan Head Tattoo

A Mayan head tattoo on a woman’s forehead
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This Mayan head tattoo sure does pack a punch! It features a headband-like motif on the forehead, symbolizing a deep connection to Mayan heritage. It is a tribute to one’s roots, a mark of pride for those seeking to honor their ancestral lineage.

66. Mayan Tree Of Life Tattoo

A Mayan tree of life tattoo on a woman’s bicep
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This Mayan Tree of Life tattoo, etched in bold black ink depicting roots and branches, is all about connection and growth. It signifies the unity of the heavens, earth, and underworld, representing life’s interconnectedness and the soul’s journey through different realms. The intricate Mayan motif border symbolizes the protection from deities surrounding the wearer’s life.

67. Mayan Arm Tattoo

A Mayan dragon tattoo on a woman’s arm
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This tattoo features a majestic Mayan dragon, coiled with intricate details on its scales and fierce head. It represents strength and protection, embodying the spirit of ancient Mayan deities. This dragon shares a deep connection to heritage and signifies a quest for courage and wisdom.

68. Mayan Ouroboros Tattoo

The Mayan Ouroboros is a captivating symbol, depicting a snake or dragon eating its own tail. This tattoo signifies regeneration and rebirth, symbolizing the endless cycle of creation and renewal. It is perfect for those who believe in constantly reinventing themselves to adapt and thrive.

69. Mayan Necklace Tattoo

A Mayan necklace tattoo
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This tattoo, draped elegantly across the collarbone and shoulders, showcases intricate patterns and symbols inspired by ancient Mayan jewelry. This design signifies strength, protection, and a deep connection to heritage. It is a beautiful and meaningful way to honor your roots while making a stylish statement.

70. Mayan Band Tattoo

A Mayan band tattoo on a woman’s leg
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You can get a Mayan band tattoo wrapped around the arm, wrist, or leg featuring intricate geometric patterns and symbols. This bold design, featuring multiple motifs, symbolizes unity, strength, and connection to Mayan heritage. It is a stylish, meaningful way to showcase your respect for rich Mayan history.

71. Mayan Calendar Hand Tattoo

A Mayan calendar tattoo on a woman’s hand
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Hand tattoos are bold, beautiful, and easily visible. Therefore, they require meaningful ink designs like this Mayan calendar tattoo. The piece features a circular stone disc-like structure with concentric rings and intricate glyphs and symbols. Each ring symbolizes different time cycles, while the glyphs and symbols represent specific days, months, or astronomical events.

72. Mayan Queen Tattoo

A Mayan queen tattoo on a man’s forearm
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Mayan queens are known for their significant roles in various fields, such as warfare, politics, and culture. This tattoo, a nod to their great efforts, showcases a stylized representation of a queen with intricately detailed facial features. The geometric patterns surrounding her emphasize her prominence. This tattoo is a symbol of strength, courage, and authority.

73. Mayan Lion Tattoo

A Mayan lion tattoo on a woman’s calf
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This design blends Mayan-inspired patterns with the majestic lion. The lion’s face is symmetrical, emphasizing balance and harmony. Its deep, almond-shaped eyes ooze clarity and wisdom, adding mystical charm to the creature. This tattoo symbolizes luck, strength, and richness in the Mayan culture.

74. Mayan Eye Tattoo

A Mayan eye tattoo on a man’s upper arm
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Eyes in Mayan culture usually represent gods and spiritual beings that watch over everything and everyone. This tattoo showcases an eye surrounded by a thick triangular border and geometric pattern. It symbolizes guidance and a connection to the divine. The tattoo may also act as a talisman that wards off negative energies and evil influences.

75. Mayan Wrist Tattoo

A Mayan tattoo on a man’s wrist
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The sun depicted in this Mayan wrist tattoo features a central circular motif with intricate patterns. Symmetrical, bold lines emerge from it, representing the sun’s rays. The tattoo uses black ink that creates a stunning contrast with the skin. It is for those who wish to relay the ideas of life, energy, power, and comic forces through their body art.

76. Mayan Collar Tattoo

A Mayan collar tattoo on a woman’s neck
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Here is a tattoo for the bold and daring! It is placed on the neck and features bold geometric shapes arranged in harmonious, repetitive sequences. They are a hallmark of Mayan art, depicting stylized representations of animals and celestial bodies. These represent various concepts of strength, bravery, and spirituality.

77. Mayan Finger Tattoo

A Mayan tattoo on a woman’s finger
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Check out this piece if you love minimalist tattoos with deep meanings. It is a modern adaptation of ancient Mayan culture and features a simple arrow on the index finger. Since the Mayans used bows and arrows to defend themselves at war, this piece symbolizes protection, defense, warrior spirit, and bravery.

78. Mayan Numbers Tattoo

A Mayan numbers tattoo under a woman’s collarbone
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The Mayan civilization used the vigesimal numeral system. This tattoo is inspired by the same. It features four dots in a horizontal line to represent the number 4. The tattoo is a simple yet meaningful representation of the connection between ancient Mayan heritage and numerology.

79. Mayan Animal Tattoo

A Mayan Animal tattoo on a woman’s leg
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Need a Mayan animal tattoo to represent your power, strength, and ferocity? Your search ends here! This piece uses intricate details and bold spots to highlight the jaguar’s fur. The geometric pattern under it adds to the Mayan theme of the design. Since jaguars are also linked to the sun god in Mayan culture, this tattoo may symbolize a connection to the spiritual realm.

80. Mayan Culture Inca Tattoo

A Mayan culture Inca tattoo on a woman’s back
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This tattoo combines Mayan motifs with Incan patterns, creating a unique blend that honors both cultures. It features a large motif in the center inspired by the gods of Incan mythology. The motif is surrounded by layers of complex shapes derived from traditional Mayan art. The design is densely packed and ideal for anyone drawn to the art of Mayan and Inca civilizations.

81. Hunab Ku Symbol Tattoo

If you love the yin-yang symbol but need something unique, your search ends here! This tattoo features the Hunab Ku symbol, the Mayan equivalent of yin-yang. It consists of a central circle surrounded by four symmetrical black and white areas enclosed inside a circle. The tattoo symbolizes balance, unity, and the idea of one god in the universe.

82. Mayan Emperor Tattoo

A Mayan emperor tattoo on a woman’s upper back
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Mayan emperors often wore elaborate headgear and jewelry adorned with feathers and intricate details. This tattoo uses subtle shading and shadows to showcase the royal charm of the emperor. The tattoo also extends to the arm and includes a skull and a Mayan temple, symbolizing mortality and a connection between heaven and earth.

83. Intricate Geometric Mayan Tattoo Design

An intricate geometric Mayan tattoo design on a man’s upper back and arm
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This tattoo begins at the back with a large circular motif, reminiscent of the Mayan calendar. It is surrounded by geometric shapes and tribal elements extending towards the shoulder and cascading gracefully down the arm. The tattoo symbolizes the passage of time and the interconnectedness of all things. It is ideal for anyone seeking a powerful and meaningful piece to pay tribute to their Mayan roots.

84. Muscular Arms Mayan Tattoo Design

Muscular Arms Mayan Tattoo Design
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The central piece in this tattoo is a circular emblem on the shoulder. It is adorned with intricate carvings and glyphs, representing the Mayan civilization’s rich history and art. The patterns transcend down the arm to form an armband followed by various rectangular and square patterns with different traditional motifs. The design is perfect for those who love elaborate tattoos with ancient roots.

85. Hawaiian Tribal Turtle Mayan Tattoo Design

A Hawaiian tribal turtle Mayan tattoo design on a woman’s upper arm
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If you love fusion tattoos, this piece combines the Hawaiian sea turtle with tribal Mayan patterns. The turtle, also known as Honu in Hawaiian, symbolizes wisdom, guidance, protection, longevity, and good luck. The Mayan tribal motifs add to this meaning and give the tattoo a classic feel.

86. Polynesian Mayan Tattoo

A Polynesia Mayan tattoo on a man’s upper arm
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Here is another fusion tattoo for you. It features a stylized Mayan mask, characterized by symmetrical features and geometric precision. The design is adorned with traditional Mayan motifs, representing the ancient civilization’s connection to spirituality. Bold lines and shapes inspired by the Polynesian tattoo art surround it, representing strength and protection.

87. Geometric Mayan Tattoo Design

A geometric Mayan tattoo design on a man’s arm
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Tattoos that blend cultural heritage with modern tattoo artistry are stunning and this design is a perfect example. It features intricate geometric patterns inspired from the traditional Mayan motifs. They begin under the bicep and span the entire length of the forearm. The tattoo is perfect for those who appreciate the fusion of historical themes with contemporary aesthetics.

88. Formidable Black Work Mayan Tattoo Design

A formidable black work Mayan tattoo design on a man’s back
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When it comes to Mayan tattoos, no other style can make them look more unique and captivating like black work. Check out this piece for yourself. It features a circular motif resembling a traditional Mayan calendar that is infamous for predicting the future. However, what makes it unique is the black work style patterns surrounding the motif. The tattoo symbolizes a deep connection to the ancient wisdom of the Maya.

89. Armband Mayan Tattoo On Shoulder

An armband Mayan tattoo on a man’s shoulder
Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

This tattoo begins at the shoulder with geometric motifs inspired by the Mayan culture. It cascades down the upper arm, forming a bold armband design that elegantly wraps around it. The tattoo uses thick, dark lines and intricate motifs to represent Mayan artistry’s cultural richness and historical depth. It is an excellent choice for both men and women who wish to pay tribute to the Mayan civilization’s rich heritage.

90. Mayan Earth Symbol Tattoo

A Mayan earth symbol tattoo on a woman’s wrist
Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

How about a minimalist tattoo that is deeply meaningful? This piece features the Mayan Earth symbol characterized by simple dots and a question mark-like form. It symbolizes nature and growth. Legend says that this symbol tends to bring ideas from the future. So, it may also symbolize foresight and wisdom.

Mayan tattoos are renowned for their distinctive monochrome aesthetics, crafted using traditional black ink methods. These surreal depictions encapsulate Mayan culture, mythology, and history, serving as creative expressions of imagination. Rooted in tradition, legends, and folklore, these designs resonate deeply with the essence of the Mayan civilization. So, embrace this rich heritage by selecting a tattoo that speaks to you.

Frequently Asked Questions

What did Mayan tattoos look like?

Mayan tattoos typically featured intricate designs with lines and common motifs, often depicting animals, gods, symbols, and geometric patterns. These tattoos were made using black ink and showcased detailed craftsmanship.

Besides black ink, were other colors used in traditional Mayan tattoos?

In traditional Mayan tattoos, black ink was used primarily. However, for modern interpretations, tattoo artists may experiment with ink colors and incorporate red and blue pigments to enhance the design and add depth to the artwork.

Where on the body did the Maya typically place their tattoos?

Mayans placed tattoos on various parts of their bodies. Women adorned tattoos on their upper body, while men typically sported them on the hands, arms, legs, backs, and sometimes even on their faces.

Is it disrespectful to get a Mayan tattoo if I am not of Mayan descent?

It is not inherently disrespectful to get a Mayan tattoo if you are not of Mayan descent. However, it is essential to approach the tattoo with respect and understanding of its cultural significance.

Can Mayan tattoos be incorporated into a larger sleeve or backpiece tattoo?

Yes, Mayan tattoos can be incorporated into larger tattoo pieces. You can combine multiple Mayan symbols, figures, and motifs and can create a visually striking and culturally meaningful tattoo design.

Key Takeaways

  • Mayan tattoos showcase intricate designs inspired by ancient Mayan culture and symbolism, reflecting strength, spirituality, and adventure.
  • Common Mayan tattoo designs include the Mayan calendar, Hunab Ku, and pyramids.
  • These tattoos often feature motifs like spirals, jaguars, and celestial symbols, symbolizing agility, protection, and cosmic balance.
  • Mayan calendar tattoos depict detailed circular patterns representing the harmony of the universe and the passage of time.
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Manjari Uppal

Manjari Uppal Beauty & Lifestyle Writer

Manjari is a beauty and lifestyle writer with over three years of experience in writing across different niches, including beauty, health, wellness, and technology. She first discovered her passion for writing in school and has since honed her craft to perfection.
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