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Turtle Tattoo: what does it
mean, designs and styles

Turtles are graceful reptiles that many people associate with slowness and persistence.

They live in rivers, ponds and oceans. Animals are widely distributed in the world, which has led to a significant role in different cultures. The turtle tattoo attracts due to the symbolism of the image.

Turtle Tattoo designs
Turtle Tattoo designs
Turtle Tattoo designs

Turtle tattoo meaning

The turtle tattoo reflects various ideas, allowing the plot to be widely used in body art.


In Polynesian and Hawaiian culture, the turtle represents peace and balance. A peaceful aquatic animal is an example of calmness and serenity. The main meanings are:

  • Courage, perseverance and perseverance.
  • Wisdom and intelligence.
  • Protection and security.
  • Strength, endurance and longevity.
  • The ability to overcome difficulties and achieve goals.
  • Spirituality and recovery.


Turtle Tattoo
Turtle Tattoo

Turtles live more than 80-100 years, which exceeds the average life expectancy of humans.

Although the animal is slow, it always performs its tasks. In many cultures, the reptile has the ability to heal the sick. At the moment of danger, the animal hides its head and paws under its shell. The solid shell protects the turtle against most enemies. Because of this feature, the turtle tattoo often means fortitude and the ability to repel enemies.

The ancient Indians believed that the turtles created continents when they carried the earth to the surface from the ocean floor. Reptiles can survive under adverse conditions, on land and in water. They are much more than meets the eye, which is reflected in symbolism. Japanese sailors considered turtles to be spirits that protect against adversity and help survive long sea voyages. This meaning is due to frequent encounters with reptiles in the open ocean, although it is believed that they need to stay on land. Another meaning of the turtle tattoo is hope and belief in a better future.

Turtle Tattoo designs
Turtle Tattoo designs
Turtle Tattoo designs

Turtles wear heavy shells throughout their lives, indicating greater strength and endurance.

Turtle tattoos are made as an incentive to develop strong-willed qualities or to emphasize their resilience and strong spirit. In search of food, the animal is in constant motion, which indicates endurance and tirelessness. The turtle never gives up. This is a perfect example and tattoo sketch for people who are trying to get through difficult times.

Most turtles are calm and friendly, they are not aggressive. A cute animal moves forward and enjoys life. For many cultures, reptiles are a symbol of good luck and prosperity. In Chinese mythology, the animal symbolizes cosmic order and balance.

Turtle Tattoo
Turtle Tattoo
Types of turtle
tattoo sketches

Turtle tattoos are performed in numerous variations.

The body images differ in size and color design. Common design options:

  • With a sea star, compass or anchor. A charm designed to protect sea travelers and point them in the right direction.
  • With flowers. Means youth, beauty, love, spirituality and enlightenment.
  • With a tiger. Represents a double power.
  • With dragon. Symbolizes double wisdom.
  • With Koi fish. Indicates good luck, luck and prosperity.

To personalize the body image, the master uses various methods, including adding inscriptions, objects, details, other animals and birds.

Turtle Tattoo designs
Turtle Tattoo designs
Turtle Tattoo designs
Different styles

Different styles are suitable for performing a turtle tattoo.

The choice depends on the artistic taste of the future owner. Body images in Hawaiian and Pacific styles are usually made in black. It is often supplemented by exotic flowers that grow in the Pacific Islands. The body images show the turtle completely or fragmentally. This may be the front half of the animal or just the shell. Popular tattoo styles:

  • Realism. Working with fine detail resembles photography. It requires fine work of elements, which causes time.
  • New School. Turtles as animated characters look fun and positive. Additions in the form of glasses, a book or a hat give the animal a smart and solid look.
  • Abstraction. The image repeats the contours of the animal without highlighting details.
  • Fineline. The body image is made by the thin lines will be a graceful addition to the elegant image.
  • Polynesian. The body image created by black lines, zigzags, geometric shapes of different shapes, looks like a complex pattern. Animal tattoo in this style acquires an additional meaning - represents the connection between the worlds, the transition from the present to the next life.
  • Traditional. This is a drawing with clear, expressive contours and rich color palette - a positive solution for creating a life-affirming atmosphere.
  • Japanese. Colorful illustration with an abundance of small details brings an extra semantic load. Symbolizes wisdom and longevity.


Turtle Tattoo
Turtle Tattoo

The turtle tattoo is done in different parts of the body.

The choice depends on the preferences of the future owner, the size and the main idea of the plot. Miniature tattoos are often placed on the shoulder, ankle, back palm, neck. Large images are applied to the back and chest.

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Remark Attention! The article was written by journalists and is informational in nature. All images are illustrative and were selected to visually complement the text material. If you have found an error or disagree with the content, please let us know at [email protected]
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