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12 Mayan Tattoo Designs That are Like Nothing You've Seen Before

12 Mayan Tattoo Designs
Tattoos have always had a spiritual and religious significance in ancient civilization. Mayans marked their male and female offspring with images of Gods and warriors as symbols of protection. Their symbols make for some amazing tattoo designs.
Indrajit Deshmukh
Last Updated: Mar 12, 2018
What a punishment!
Mayans used to tattoo their enemies instead of killing them. Even the thieves were tattooed on their faces as punishment.
In your quest to find a unique, but meaningful design for your next tattoo you may have stumbled upon Mayan art. If ancient art and history is something you love, then you can get a tattoo with Mayan symbols or hieroglyphics.

Mayans were a Mesoamerican civilization, with a richly developed architecture, art, astronomy, mathematics, and a highly developed writing system. Their origins can be traced back to around 1800 B.C., in Honduras, Belize, Guatemala. They used tattoos to depict their devotion to the polytheistic culture they followed, and many of their deities, and hieroglyphics were tattooed on their bodies. They believed that this would bring inner peace and prosperity.

We have compiled some designs for you; take a look; make your choice; tweak the design if you wish, but do understand the meaning properly before finalizing one.
Mayan Calendar
Mayan Calendar Colour Illustration
Mayar Stone
Yes, the end of the world theory has popularized the Mayan calendar. It is indeed a great piece of art, with an intricate design. The stars and planets are beautifully depicted in it, and the calendar was fairly accurate regarding its references to celestial bodies. This can be a good option to flaunt on your back, or the nape of your neck. You would need an experienced tattoo artist considering the details and pattern.
Mayan Deities
Vector Maya Image of the Deity
Face in style of Maya Indians, vector illustration
Mayan heads 2
If you are really fascinated by the Mayan culture, you can get Mayan gods tattooed on your body. Mayans believed that such tattoos helped imbibe the qualities of those gods, provide inner peace, and led to spiritual development of the person. Different gods are associated with different traits and natural elements, so do take some time to research those qualities.
Sun Tattoos
Black and white illustration Mayan hieroglyphic representing the Sun
Sun tattoo illustration
Sun was highly revered by the Mayans, and associated with traits like awareness, clarity, and enlightenment. The sun symbolized all things positive, and spiritual enlightenment. You can get a small sun tattoo on your wrist, neck, lower body, etc. Going for a hieroglyphic sun tattoo is also a good idea if you wish to add an element of mysticism.
Animal Tattoos
The jaguar is associated with balance, strength, and domination. Mayans believed that the Jaguar God ruled the underworld at dusk. They also believed that the jaguar roamed the sky from east to west in the morning. The cycle of day and night were the domain of the jaguar. It makes for an excellent back tattoo, especially for the men. You can combine it with other elements as well.
Black and white illustration of part snake, part bird, Mayan god Kukulcan
The Mayan Ouroboros, a snake or dragon-like symbol is also a good design idea. Why? Because it has a deep meaning. If you observe the symbol, you'll realize that the snake is eating its own tail, which means regeneration and regrowth. Thus, you can get this tattoo to inspire and motivate yourself in life.
Mayan Woman
Mayan woman and hieroglyphs
Mayans were a rich civilization with a lot of interest and aptitude in the art of adornment. If you want an aesthetically appealing tattoo without too much symbolism, then this Mayan woman design is something you can opt for. You can customize it for a more personalized touch.
There are many other symbols in Maya culture, that you can take a look at. A guardian of the underworld, the bat was know an zotz,' and symbolized good and evil at the same time. It was seen as a symbol of power, and they believed that the bat would destroy their enemies and guard them against evil.
Symbolic of the vastness and the steady shifting, the earth was a symbol of patience for the Mayans. They believed that if they tattooed their bodies with the earth sign, they would have peace and prosperity.
Mayan tattoos have been a source for people to reaffirm their faith in powers that they deem are greater than them. The most important factor to be considered when getting these tattoos is the meaning and interpretation. You can also add certain elements of Maya civilization to your existing tattoo.
Hawaiian Seamless Pattern
Tattoo on rib side