Generally, the term ‘Celtic” tends to refer to the cultures of Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Brittany, and a few more. In other words, these areas and cultures are known as Celtic nations. Whether you are of Irish heritage or simply like the symbolism of Celtic tradition, a Celtic tattoo is a meaningful and unique design option.

Because they are often very detailed and intricate, Celtic tattoos tend to look very elegant and regal, making them quite versatile and available for pretty much any part of the body. From a Celtic knot on the upper arm to a Celtic animal tattoo across the chest, here’s our list of the 35 best Celtic tattoos for men

1. Celtic Cross Tattoo

The most important part of a Celtic cross is the center ring that symbolizes God’s, infinite love. That being said, Celtic cross tattoos are a beautiful and meaningful option for men who are looking to show their devotion to their religion with a more in-depth detail that is often absent in traditional cross tattoos. 

Celtic Cross Tattoo
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2. Celtic Knot Tattoo

One of the more famous Celtic symbols, Celtic knot tattoos represent eternity and unity in the afterlife. The interweaving lines through the circle create an unbroken flow, making this one of the most beautiful Celtic tattoo designs. 

Celtic Knot Tattoo
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3. Celtic Tree Of Life Tattoo

Representing the bridge between heaven and earth, the Celtic Tree of Life symbolizes the never-ending cycle of life and death. Celtic Tree of Life tattoos are wildly intricate and eye-catching when done properly, and due to the amount of detailing that goes into them, they are best done on an area of the body that has ample space. 

Celtic Tree Of Life
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4. Celtic Warrior Tattoo

Celtic warriors were known to tattoo their chests and arms using ink made from a mixture of Woad plants, so getting a Celtic warrior tattoo is most authentic when done in one of these two areas. These tattoos were meant to intimidate, and they often featured bright coloring. 

Celtic Warrior Tattoo
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5. Celtic Dragon Tattoo

Celtic dragon tattoos are said to represent power, independence, and leadership. In Celtic culture, dragons were also guardians of wisdom and knowledge.

Celtic Dragon Tattoo
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6. Celtic Band Tattoo

For those wanting to add a traditional Celtic tattoo that does not showcase any specific image, a band of knots serves as a modern and unique approach. 

Celtic Band Tattoo
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7. Celtic Wolf Tattoo

Rather than just designing the face of a wolf, many Celtic wolf tattoos portray the animal as ready to attack or pounce, showcasing its power and dominance.

Celtic Wolf Tattoo
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8. Celtic Raven Tattoo

Known as a symbol of intelligence, Celtic raven tattoos can represent wisdom along with the infinite polarity of good and evil.

Celtic Raven Tattoo
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9. Celtic Tribal Tattoo

Since many tribal tattoos include Celtic knots, these two concepts are relatively simple to combine into one cohesive and impactful design. 

Celtic Tribal Tattoo
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10. Celtic Bear Tattoo

In addition to providing guidance and protection, Celtic bear tattoos are intended to be worn as a sign of fearlessness and bravery against all odds. Whether it be fearlessness against the dark, the cold, or even death, men who want to display their strength and courage can do so in style with a Celtic bear tattoo.

Celtic Bear Tattoo
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11. Celtic Symbols Tattoo

For those seeking a smaller and more subtle Celtic tattoo, several different Celtic symbols can be used to pay tribute to the culture, no matter how big or small you prefer them.

Celtic Symbols Tattoo
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12. Celtic Symbol for Family Tattoo

Often called the Triquetra or Trinity Knot, these images stand for family, eternal love, and strength. 

Celtic Symbol For Family Tattoo
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13. Celtic Motherhood Knot Tattoo

Celtic motherhood knot creates an intricate image representing the unbreakable and everlasting bond between a mother and her child. If you would like to get a tattoo that pays tribute to your mother in a more personal and meaningful way, Celtic motherhood knot tattoos certainly get the message across. 

Celtic Motherhood Knot Tattoo
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14. Celtic Wedding Rings Tattoo

If traditional wedding rings are not your style, Celtic wedding ring tattoos not only hold a special meaning and bond between couples, but they are also impossible to misplace! 

Celtic Wedding Rings Tattoo
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15. Celtic Shield Knot Tattoo

Celtic shield knot tattoos simply add a specific shape and border to a more traditional Celtic knot tattoo. These designs can also represent defense and protection against dark forces. 

Celtic Shield Knot Tattoo
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16. Celtic Heart Tattoo

Also called the Celtic Love Knot, Celtic heart tattoos often display two interlocked hearts unified by knots or the infinity sign. This tattoo clearly represents the love between two people or even God and man. 

Celtic Heart Tattoo
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17. Celtic Owl Tattoo

Most often associated with wisdom, Celtic owl tattoos create a unique look that stands apart from more traditional owl tattoos. Similar to Native American beliefs, Celtic culture also promotes the idea that owls serve as guides from one life to the next. 

Celtic Owl Tattoo
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18. Celtic Shamrock Tattoo

Though some may see the shamrock as the same as a clover, Celtic shamrock tattoos more commonly represent faith in the holy trinity rather than just luck. 

Celtic Shamrock Tattoo
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19. Celtic Compass Tattoo

Acting as a symbol of guidance and direction, Celtic compass tattoos can be done as a ritualist tool to ensure that you always walk the proper path without faltering. 

Celtic Compass Tattoo
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20. Celtic Sun Tattoo

Being that the sun is seen as the source of life in Celtic culture, Celtic sun tattoos most often symbolize creation, fertility, and even healing. To have a Celtic sun tattoo means to carry around a permanent sense of life and creativity. 

Celtic Sun tattoo on calf
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21. Celtic Tree Tattoo

Though the Celtic Tree of Life is the most popular option, Celtic tree tattoos can be done more simply to highlight the infinite connection between nature and Celtic culture.

Celtic Tree Tattoo
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22. Celtic Viking Tattoo

Celtic Viking tattoos manage to combine two different cultures in a way that compliments and empowers the other. Whether you have a Norse heritage or like the style of these tattoos, Celtic Viking tattoos are doable across a wide range of images.

Celtic Viking Tattoo
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23. Gaelic Celtic Dragon Tattoo

A Gaelic Celtic dragon tattoo is a wonderful option for those looking to design a masculine and powerful tattoo that combines both the Gaelic and Celtic cultures. 

Gaelic Celtic Dragon Tattoo
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24. Celtic Skull Tattoo

Celtic skull tattoos remain relevant to Celtic concepts of death and life yet do so slightly darker and edgier than other designs.

Celtic Skull Tattoo
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25. Celtic Butterfly Tattoo

Due to ancient artworks and statues depicting butterflies leaving the mouth of a dying man, Celtic butterfly tattoos can be seen as symbols of the soul or self beyond the physical body. 

Celtic Butterfly Tattoo
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26. Celtic Clover Tattoo

Celtic clover tattoos draw a direct connection between Celtic culture and Irish folklore. Because clovers are seen as a sign of luck to the Irish, this Celtic tattoo holds a lot of positivity.

Celtic Clover Tattoo
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27. Celtic Symbol Knot Tattoo

Though Celtic knot tattoos can be done in various ways, turning a traditional Celtic symbol into a know makes for a unique and extra meaningful piece of ink. 

Celtic Symbol Knot Tattoo
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28. Celtic Triskelion Tattoo

Said to be the oldest symbol of spiritual practice, the Celtic Triskelion represents both the inner and outer worlds and the unity of the mental body, spiritual body, and physical body. Celtic Triskelion tattoos can be done relatively small for those who want something more subtle yet powerful.

Celtic Triskelion Tattoo
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29. Celtic Animal Tattoo

No matter what animal you choose to get, Celtic animal tattoos create a bond between nature and Celtic culture, which is heavily tied to spirituality and life beyond death. 

Celtic Animal Tattoo
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30. Celtic Moon Tattoo

Celtic moon tattoos can be designed in a way that incorporates the infinite Celtic knot to allude to the idea of the moon’s role in spirituality and the afterlife. 

Celtic Moon Tattoo
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31. Celtic Sleeve Tattoo

Celtic sleeve tattoos allow the designer to get creative and combine various Celtic symbols and images into a cohesive and complementary scene. 

Celtic Sleeve Tattoo
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32. Celtic Forearm Tattoo

From Celtic symbols to a slimmer Tree of Life, Celtic forearm tattoos are great for those who don’t want to hide their ink and prefer to showcase their art. 

Celtic Forearm Tattoo
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33. Celtic Shoulder Tattoo

One of the best Celtic shoulder tattoos is a Celtic knot design on the ball of the shoulder. The shoulder gives the Celtic tattoo a rounded effect that is difficult to accomplish anywhere else on the body.

Celtic Shoulder Tattoo
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34. Celtic Chest Tattoo

Celtic chest tattoos can include anything from a symbolic Celtic animal to an enclosed Celtic Tree of Life tattoo. Celtic chest tattoos are also perfect for men who are looking to be able to hide their ink easily.

Celtic Chest Tattoo
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35. Celtic Back Tattoo

Since the back is a huge canvas, Celtic back tattoos are best reserved for more intricate and detailed scenes showing true dedication and connection to the Celtic culture. 

Celtic Back Tattoo
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Celtic Tattoo FAQ:

What is a Celtic tattoo?

Celtic tattoos are heavily tied to nature and the five elements of water, air, earth, fire, and space. The knots, which are a more popular and well-known part of Celtic tattoos, tend to symbolize various concepts such as life, death, and the afterlife. 

What does a Celtic tree tattoo mean?

Traditionally, the Celtic tree of life stands for balance and harmony. Again, the Celtic tree ties in the components of nature that are so important to Celtic culture and belief. 

What does the Celtic owl tattoo mean?

Most often known as a symbol of protection, a Celtic owl tattoo acts as an intentional form of defense against the darker forces of the universe. Celtic culture specifically promotes the belief that owls protect spirits of the dead from more negative energies and entities. 

What tattoo should go with a Celtic cross?

Though Celtic crosses tend to give a nod to the Christian religion, Celtic cross tattoos are also often paired with Celtic knots, alluding to the idea that there is infinite life after death.