Do you want a tattoo that’s as chill as your personality?
A palm tree tattoo is a great way to bring the beach vibes with you wherever you go.
If you’re someone who’s into walks by the shore, nighttime beach dance parties, and anything along the lines of relaxation—a palm tree tattoo lets you live the beach lifestyle every single day.
Palm tree tattoo designs are great and can be done in a variety of ways.
From fully detailed beach environments to highly aesthetic Vaporwave visuals, it’s a design theme limited only by one’s imagination.
In this article, I’ve compiled 35 of the most breathtaking palm tree tattoos ever.
Each artist is given due credit, so if you want to check out more of their work or message them directly, their names and Instagram accounts are all there!
Towards the end, I’ll also answer some FAQs and talk about the various symbolisms associated with palm trees, so keep reading!
Palm Tree Tattoos
Black and Grey Palm Tree Tattoos
A great thing about palm trees is that their silhouette is so easily recognizable. You can recognize it immediately by its solitary shoot ending in a crown of leaves.
Because of this, you don’t have to try very hard to have a decent-looking palm tree tattoo. Hyper realistic illustrations are a plus, but the silhouette does great on its own, by Sebastian. (@sebastian_tattoo on Instagram).
In this piece, since blackwork style is used, there is an absence of finer details such as the bark, or any sort of texture.
Even then, the artist still does a great job of creating a hyper realistic silhouette.
Upon closer inspection, the trunk still has the ruggedness of palm tree bark.
And each stroke that makes up every one of its leaves is done carefully to imitate the windiness of an environment it would typically grow in, by Paulina Szatkowska. (@szafkart on Instagram).
On a beach, a palm tree is a very good place to rest and watch the sunset pass by.
It’s the perfect place to lay back and watch the day come to an end before it begins anew.
If you want a tattoo that you can gaze upon after a tiring day, consider getting a similar design, by Cristian Aviles. (@cristian_rav on Instagram).
The long and slender trunk can also do a good job as a design element. By utilizing its trunk as a dividing line, a split portrait design can be made.
In this piece, a skull is seen on one side of the palm tree. On the other side are the words “memento mori” written in cursive, an expression which translates to “remember that you will die”.
Without context, memento mori has morbid implications, but its meaning is one akin to “seize the day”, or put less elegantly, “YOLO”, by Sebastian. (@sebastian_tattoo on Instagram).
In this piece, a skeleton lays back against the trunk of a (surprisingly short) palm tree.
It hums to the smooth tunes playing on a vintage gramophone.
The design sort of mimics the style of Vaporwave visuals that have emerged in recent years, but without much of the glitching effects or purple hues, by WAZ. (@waz.art on Instagram).
In this awesome hyper realistic forearm tattoo, a hammock hangs snugly from the trunks of two palm trees.
By concentrating much of the shadows into one portion of the illustration, the highlights are able to really pop in this piece, by architex.lamachineinfernale . (@architex.lamachineinfernale on Instagram).
Palm trees don’t seem very complicated to illustrate, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
The leaflets and bark details are enough to make any tattoo artist struggle.
But when the finer details are done correctly, they can look exceptionally pleasing.
In this piece, a hyper realistic style is adopted by the artist to illustrate a loving parent carrying their child, by Mate & Bojana Parlov. (@tattoo_parlov on Instagram).
If you’re going for a simple design that uses only a single palm tree, it can be a good idea to add a couple of elements to finish the design off without being too overwhelming.
In this case, a few circles and lines are added to imitate the dazzling gleam of a lens flare, which adds to the whole tropical vibe, by John Balestri. (@johnb.designs on Instagram).
Sunset Palm Tree Tattoos
In this forearm piece, the palm tree is used more as a secondary element to complete the whole “tropical” aesthetic.
The focal point in this piece is a beautiful orange sunset illustrated in hyper realistic fashion, by Bryon McVaney. (@bmtat2 on Instagram).
If you’re going for a sunset scene using two or more palm trees, it’s generally a good idea to place it somewhere spacious like the thigh or chest, by Gordy. (@tattoogordy on Instagram).
Small Palm Tree Tattoos
This piece is a testament to how recognizable the silhouettes of palm trees are. In this piece, the artist draws the palm trees in no more than six strokes.
A small crescent moon is added to add a feeling of serenity to this extremely simplistic tattoo, by Tattooist_Nieun. (@nieun_tat2 on Instagram).
In this minimalist palm tree tattoo, the artist still uses some level of detail.
The trunk and leaves are outlined and the finer details are still well executed, given the scale of the tattoo, by Blunt’s Tattoo Shop. (@bluntstattoo on Instagram).
In this piece, there is a noticeable absence of black.
The artist uses bright colored dotwork exclusively to create a fuzzy, light texture, which adds to the “rest & relaxation” theme attached to palm tree tattoo, by AURORA. (@aurora_handpoke on Instagram).
Minimalist Palm Tree Tattoo
Palm trees are most commonly found in desert environments.
But even though this is their natural habitat, this doesn’t mean they’re very common.
Palm trees are still pretty rare, even in deserts, so seeing one after a long, tiring journey was usually an exhilarating feeling for desert travelers.
Because of this, desert oases are viewed as places of rest and replenishment.
By using calm colors and lines, this piece captures that feeling perfectly, by YANNinks Tattoo Studio. (@yanninkstattoo on Instagram).
This calf tattoo uses a somewhat minimalist approach by limiting the design to fewer elements and using richer coloring, by Johanna Dieterle. (@johannadieterle on Instagram).
Since the silhouette of palm trees are so easily recognizable, designs can even go as simple as just using blackwork style.
This calf tattoo pulls off an awesome minimalist aesthetic by drawing the leaves in a way that each leaflet is just a vertical line.
If you’re also an audiophile, you can pull of a two-layered tattoo using this type of aesthetic, since audio editing waves have a similar appearance, by Christian Eisenhofer. (@tattoosandbadjokes on Instagram).
If you’re looking for a clean and crisp aesthetic, traditional tattoo style is one that never goes out of style.
Crisp line work is used to create a clean look, while gentle dotwork is used sparingly to add some texture and depth, by Indigo. (@indigo.t_t on Instagram).
The great thing about minimalist tattoos is that they can invoke a great deal of emotion by using as few elements as possible.
Normally, water is a very difficult thing to illustrate, especially in tattoo.
But when a minimalist style is adopted, you can create a very unique, melancholy effect only possible through a minimalist approach, by Hosang Lee. (@shadow_tattooer on Instagram).
Blackwork can do very well when depicting minimalist tattoos.
In this piece, the palm tree isn’t just a silhouette.
Highlights and shadows are done carefully as to maintain the imagery while keeping details to an absolute minimum, by KERNEL STUDIO. (@childpct on Instagram).
If you have a pet or a spirit animal, consider incorporating them into your design.
In this piece, a panda bear sits idly by a pair of palm trees under the light of the moon, by WooJu Tattoo. (@wooju_tattoo on Instagram).
Traditional Palm Tree Tattoos
A traditional style tattoo like this can do really great when used with other traditional style tattoos, by Indigo. (@indigo.t_t on Instagram).
In this piece, an entire tropical environment is done using a traditional style, by Omar M. (@omar_m on Instagram).
Watercolor Palm Tree Tattoos
If you’re looking to relive some of your younger days watching Disney on TV, a great way to replicate that nostalgic feeling is through the use of watercolor tattoo style, by Constantina. (@constan_tina on Instagram).
An awesome way to put a spin on your palm tree tattoo is by changing its color scheme.
In this piece, the artist changes the color of the leaves into bright neon colors.
By doing this, the tattoo has an entirely different, cheerful feel to it, by Aracely Ramírez Ponce. (@_aramoonlight_ on Instagram).
Another awesome tattoo style to consider when getting your palm tree tattoo is the New School tattoo style.
It uses vibrant colors and an illustration style similar to American Traditional, by zack. (@o.g.movement on Instagram).
Abstract Palm Tree Tattoos
An abstract approach can also look very pleasing if it fits your tastes.
Instead of illustrating elements in an easily recognizable way, they’re done using obscure, representative strokes and figures.
In this piece, a palm tree is illustrated using abstract strokes of black and blue, with yellow highlights.
In the background is a sunset scene illustrated using an orange hue, by tattooer_summer. (@tattooer_summer on Instagram).
This is another abstract palm tree tattoo done by the same artist.
In this piece, the palm tree is illustrated in hues of hot pink, dark blue, and dark green.
In the background is a minimally drawn shoreline which trails off into a mountain range, by tattooer_summer. (@tattooer_summer on Instagram).
Retro Palm Tree Tattoos
This piece perfectly executes the vintage 80s aesthetic.
The palm tree in this piece works as the focal point of the image, with gorgeously colored ocean waves flanking it from the sides.
A diamond shape enclose the image, and the words “where your road leads” are seen at the top.
This is a great example of how palm trees can make great tattoo themes if you’re going for a motivational tattoo, by Brittney Hendricks. (@brittneyhendricks_ink on Instagram).
In this piece, the artist masterfully mimics the style of wide brush strokes to color in the ocean & sky background.
Styles like these are incredibly hard to pull off and require a great deal of practice, since they demand mastery of both painting and tattoo.
If you have a skilled tattoo artist, having them do a style like this can really add to the overall aesthetic of a tattoo, by Reese Hilburn. (@theartofreese on Instagram).
This design fully incorporates the use of the style popularized by the hit TV show, Miami Vice.
The show had great cultural influence using the iconic tropical sunset orange, neon pink, midnight purple, and sky blue colors so often seen in pieces like this, by Shane Lykins. (@the_shane_tattoo on Instagram).
This design uses a similar style, but with fewer colors, by Major_ink_tattoos. (@major_ink_studios_2 on Instagram).
If you’re especially fond of the beach lifestyle, consider pairing your palm tree with other beach elements.
In this piece, a palm tree is used as a secondary element to complement the wave which contrasts wildly against the orange sky.
Tattoos like these are great for when you want to take a break from the stress of everyday life.
Just by looking at your tattoo, you can withdraw yourself from the tension of any situation and immerse yourself into the crispness of the crashing of the waves, by Stan Finchem. (@eastpunk on Instagram).
Couple Palm Tree Tattoos
If you’re into getting a couple tattoos for you and your significant other or close friend, a minimalist approach does the job well.
It’s also less difficult for your artist to recreate the same design if you stick to a minimalist design, by Fabricio Amezquita. (@fabro.amezquitattoo on Instagram).
Geometric Palm Tree Tattoos
Palm tree tattoos also look very nice when done in geometric style.
Geometric tattoos suggest perfection and symmetry, and when done well can look awesome.
In this piece, the lines are just the perfect weight. Thick enough to make the piece visible, but thin enough not to overwhelm it.
If geometric tattoos are a style that you’re into, consider putting a similar style done for your palm tree tattoo, by Gold & Blue tattoo. (@goldandbluetattoo on Instagram).
If you want to put a different spin on your palm tree tattoo, this design takes an awesome approach to illustrate the palm branches.
Instead of drawing them the normal way, this design takes advantage of the unique structure of the crown of the palm tree to draw a pattern similar to mandalas, by Sarah. (@la_french_sarah on Instagram).
What does the palm tree symbolize?
Sometimes people will get palm tree tattoos purely because of their chill, tropical vibe. But it can also be very helpful to know about the various symbolisms associated with palm trees.
To help you understand your palm tree tattoo better, this section is devoted to discussing the various ideas and symbolisms that palm trees represent.
Let’s get started.
Wealth & Leisure
The first time you set foot onto the creative capital of the world, L.A., California, you’ll immediately notice the abundance of tall palm trees lining every street.
And I mean every street.
They aren’t just found on big boulevards.
Los Angeles planted palm trees in tiny residential streets, parks, and basically everywhere you’d think of going. And tourist spots (beaches, sports arenas, wealthy hills) had it even better.
But funnily enough, these trees aren’t even native to L.A.
Back then, Los Angeles was empty. It was all sun and sand. And the only reason you had to go to Los Angeles was to buy or sell land…until L.A. realized they could completely transform their image.
By systematically planting palm trees on every single street you could find, L.A. marketed itself as a tropical paradise of luxury cars and sunshine.
Since then, palm trees took off as a symbol of wealth, leisure, and relaxation.
They’ve even been used on luxury cruises like the Titanic or the Lusitania, because of how easy it was to move them.
Since they aren’t like your usual trees that have complex root systems (palm trees just have a single compact root ball), you can basically plant and re-plant them anywhere you want, as long as the place had sunshine and water.
And since palm trees are usually one of the first things you see at a beach, they’ve become somewhat of a universal symbol for everything concerning the beach lifestyle.
Everything from beach dance parties to surf culture to beach calisthenics can be summed up with the image a palm tree.
Palm trees are also one of the most iconic elements used in the Vaporwave aesthetic of the recent decade, a visual art style that often mimics the retro style of the 1980s.
What’s crazy about all this is that it all happened because of the success of one of the greatest marketing ventures in the world.
Triumph & Victory
Even in classical antiquity, palm trees were held in high regard.
In Ancient Greece, they used palm branches as trophies. The victors of athletic contests would receive a palm branch as a reward for their victory.
This practice was also adopted by the Ancient Romans, to the point where the Latin word Palma would eventually become synonymous with victory.
The Roman goddess Victoria, the personification of victory, was frequently depicted with a palm branch. And lawyers of the Roman forum who won their cases were known to decorate their front doors with palm leaves.
This association probably came to be because of the size and imposing appearance of these trees.
Palm trees can grow up to the height of a three-story building, which likely meant they towered over most structures in classical antiquity.
Other than that, their massive crowns stretched far from one side to the other. Because of this, they bear some resemblance to flags planted on the ground—a sign of victory.
Peace & Prosperity
Fun fact: this symbolism happened as a by-product of palm trees being recognized as a symbol of victory.
After all, when one side of conflict emerges victorious, it means that the conflict has ended.
And without conflict, there is peace.
Because palm trees had come to represent triumph and victory, this also meant that they were a symbol of peace.
This is evident in its uses in modern flags and coats of arms. On the combat patch for the US Forces – Iraq, the palm fronds represent peace and prosperity.
It’s also generally seen as a symbol of tropical paradise. It often appears in Islamic depictions of paradise in the Quran.
Initially, palm trees symbolized triumph and victory exclusively, but over time, it had also come to mean peace and prosperity, as an aftermath of victory.
The palm tree was also seen as a link between the heavens and the earth.
Its crown represented the heavens, while the base of the tree represented the earth. Both were connected by the palm’s towering trunk.
Because of this, some cultures viewed palm trees as a Sacred Tree.
Palm trees also represent longevity.
Apart from being able to live up to 100 years, one of the main reasons people revere palm trees is because of the value these trees provide in terms of survival.
If you’ve seen enough “castaway” type movies and survival shows, you’d know that seeing palm trees on an abandoned island is like hitting a jackpot.
Why? Because everything about palm trees is useful for survival.
Its fruits are food and water at the same time, and its trunk and branches can both be used for shelter.
You can live months off just a forest of palm trees.
And it’s for these reasons that it’s called the “tree of life” in the Philippines, and the “tree with a thousand uses” in Malaysia.
So, while the obvious explanation as to why palm trees are revered for their longevity is because of their century-long lifespans, it’s also worth appreciating how useful they are to keeping humans as well as other wildlife alive.
Palm Tree Tattoo FAQs
Why should I get a palm tree tattoo?
Generally, I believe palm trees are a good fit for anyone.
Even if you’re not too into the 80s retro aesthetic or beach lifestyle that palm trees are often associated with, there’s a lot of other things it’s tied to.
Looking at a well done beach tattoo is a good way to remind yourself of how chill life can be if you decide to look past the stressful moments.
It’s a tattoo that always does well to bring in good vibes, and one that I’ll always recommend.
Where should I put my palm tree tattoo?
In this list alone, there are plenty of good placements.
In general, its slenderness and length lends itself well to places with similar proportions such as the forearm or the calf.
But if you’re going with a full beach scene, the piece obviously won’t be as slender, so places like the chest and thighs are ideal.
Will it hurt?
Yep. But it depends on quite a few factors.
First, your personal pain tolerance.
Do you deal with pain well? If you’re someone who can generally handle a bit of scratching, then you won’t have any trouble dealing with this type of tattoo.
Second, how big and complex is your design?
Endorphins usually set in after a while into the tattoo session and help you numb out the pain. But if you’re going for a large tattoo design, the session will take much longer.
And when you’re exposed to pain for longer periods of time, endorphins start to wear off. So it’s usually less painful to have smaller, simpler designs.
Other than affecting the duration of your tattoo session, the size of your tattoo will also affect which parts of the body are involved.
If you’re going for a forearm tattoo, the pain will be more tolerable. The fat and muscle on your forearm will act as a protective layer against the tattoo needle’s rapid vibrations.
But if you’ve got a big enough tattoo, it could even extend beyond the forearm and into the inner elbow or wrist.
These parts of the arm are usually bonier and have less fat and muscle, so the pain will get noticeably more intense.
If you want to learn about which body parts hurt most when getting tattooed, Healthline has written a very informative article on this subject.
Sometimes it can be difficult to look past the hardships and stress, but the only way you can make it is by staying optimistic and focused.
And if you need help staying on track, palm tree tattoos are great reminders that life isn’t just a bunch of Ls.
They’re symbols of leisure and triumph. They help us remember our goals, celebrate our victories, and reignite our passions.
Did you enjoy these palm tree tattoo designs or are you looking for more inspiration? Check out the following links to see more designs from talented artists.