The 20 Best Tarot Card Decks For You To Buy

Photo: Poring Studio / shutterstock.com  
tarot cards surrounded by candles
Self

Welcome to The World of Tarot! Thought to be originally from the Ancient Egyptian, tarot cards were first popularized in the 18th century by a Frenchman named Jean-Baptiste Alliette who was the first person who made a living from foreseeing the future through cards.

Purchasing a tarot deck for the first time can be exciting and overwhelming. There are so many amazing decks to choose from, after all.

Some seasoned tarot card readers think you shouldn't purchase a deck for yourself, but receive it as a gift instead. I think it's perfectly okay to purchase a tarot deck for yourself — because who makes all those rules anyhow?

If you feel connected to having someone else purchase and/or choose a tarot deck for you, that's fine. But if you want to take your time finding the tarot deck that feels right for you to purchase yourself, this list of the best tarot decks out there, and the reasons each may or may not make a good choice for you, can help.

RELATED: Which Tarot Card Are You, According To Numerology & Your Birthdate

Choosing your own tarot cards and even making the purchase yourself can be empowering. And why not? Your tarot cards are bound to feel like something you can connect to energetically for great readings.

And if someone wants to buy a tarot deck for you as a gift, knowing which one you would prefer can make the present that much better for both of you.

There are many tarot cards on the market, ranging from beginner to advance tarot reader level, so it could be easy to feel overwhelmed with so many exciting options to choose from.

Each tarot deck comes with unique artwork and symbolism. Some include a high-quality companion book on how to use the cards. Some just hit you with that certain energy that lets you know this deck is meant for you. Tarot cards have proven they are so much more than just playing cards — they can also be used to count cards. 

All of these factors are important for you to take into consideration when deciding which tarot deck you want to invest in.

What are the 78 cards in a Tarot deck?

In a traditional Tarot set, there are 78 cards: 22 Major Arcana and 56 Minor Arcana. Each card has its own meaning, with the Major Arcana dealing with big, important life events, and Minor Arcana focusing on the events of everyday life.

Major Arcana cards are numbered from 0 to 21, telling an allegorical story that begins with the Fool, known as the most powerful card in traditional decks, this card is unnumbered. The Fool is also interpreted to represent the protagonist in the story or the great mystery of life. The rest of the cards are numbered cards.

Minor Arcana cards are divided into 4 suits, with 14 cards in each suit: the Suit of Wands, the Suit of Cups, the Suit of Swords and the Suit of Pentacles.

What is the best beginner tarot deck?

While there are many different opinions on which tarot deck is the best, there are multiple arguments for the Rider-Waite Tarot Deck being one of the best, especially for beginners. For non-beginners, many seem to love the Marseille Tarot Deck.

There are many different decks available, but the most popular all happen to be on this list: the Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot Deck, Marseilles Tarot Deck, and the Thoth Tarot Deck.

To broaden your horizon even more, there are also oracle decks. Oracle cards differ from tarot, as the reading is more internal than external.

How can tarot cards help you? 

Whether you're a beginner, intermediate, or experienced with reading the cards, tarot can answer the biggest burning questions in your life, whether it's about your relationships, career, or anything else for which you need answers.

When you're looking for answers, not only can tarot cards provide guidance, but they help you get to know yourself a little better. Tarot can also help you get in touch with your intuition, see what bad habits are holding you back, and where you can improve on being honest with yourself.

 

As an avid tarot reader myself, I've taken the liberty of coming up with this list that includes some of the most beautiful, popular decks out there (it's still just a drop in the bucket, though!).

The 20 Best Tarot Decks To Try

1. Rider-Waite Tarot Deck

This deck was originally published in 1909 drawn by Pamela Colman Smith. It's considered the gold standard for tarot decks, as most decks are modeled from this deck.

A great beginner deck, there's plenty of information available about how to use this deck. The deck contains highly symbolic artwork but is pretty basic in artistic design. It's easy to use and sold in many locations and platforms.

Available from U.S. Games Systems, Inc., $21.95

2. New Age Gilded Tarot Deck

The Gilded Tarot deck is a 78-card deck by artist Ciro Marchetti. This is a beautiful fantasy deck incorporating Medieval and even steampunk design elements.

The artist used both hand-drawn and digital designs to create this fantastic and beautifully colored deck. It's a vibrant deck modeled off the traditional Rider-Waite symbolism, and would make a lovely choice.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

3. Renaissance Tarot Deck

This lovely deck of 78 cards, created by artist Brian Williams, uses Greek god and goddess type figures, as well as mythology scenes to portray the symbolism of tarot. Each card takes an opportunity to touch upon the stories and themes of ancient mythology.

With golden touches through the deck, it's bound to be entrancing to use. The subtle colors and design style are reminiscent of the historical art style of the Renaissance time period. Having this deck could feel like owning art you could have seen in a museum of ancient works!

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

4. Dreams Of Gaia Tarot Deck

The Dreams of Gaia deck contains 81 cards by artist Ravynne Phelan. Each card is an artistic design dream, with colors combined in strong and vibrant detail. The colors used allow the cards each embody a bold symbolic statement.

Every card in this deck is beyond beautiful and the nature theme throughout the deck is highly enjoyable. If this deck connects with you, you would love it so much that you may never want to use another.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews.

5. The Good Tarot Deck

The cards in this beautiful deck are ethereal and delicate; there's a fairytale feel to each card with soft flowing colors and lovely card designs. The energy of this deck offers a positive vibe to all the cards, with no negative approach; instead, it offers positive feedback even to tricky situations.

These cards have dreamy psychic imagery and symbols rooted in ancient times. The cards have a simple vibe and offer growth-centered interpretations.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

RELATED: How To Clean (& Shuffle) A Used Tarot Card Deck Of Energy

6. Crystal Visions Tarot Deck

Crystal Visions is a deck by artist Jennifer Galasso and has 79 cards. This dreamy deck was named for Stevie Nick's album "Crystal Visions." The deck has an unknown "blank"-type card to indicate an unknowable element when drawn.

The Crystal Visions deck is based off the Raider-Waite Deck, using exquisitely beautiful card designs to convey the energy and symbols of tarot. The images are straightforward and clean.

The figures in the cards, while beautifully drawn, are bold and, as tarot should be, symbolically full. For instance, the Death card has Rider-Waite symbols, and others such as runes and the Egyptian ankh.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

7. Cosmic Tarot Deck

The Cosmic Tarot is a 78-card deck created by artist Norbert Losche. Both the images and energy of this cosmically beautiful deck are striking. It has an art deco theme, which many have a soft spot for.

The dignity in these cards is evident  because the colors used, while muted, are still intense. Definitely a deck for wrapping in a silk scarf!

Available from U.S. Games Systems, Inc., $26.95

8. Vice Versa Tarot Deck

The Vice Versa Tarot deck by two artists', Massimiliano Filadoro and Davide Corsi, is very unique. It's comprised of 78 cards, but every card has a fully designed backside, a reflection image of the front, for a total of 156 images.

Alternate meanings are included in the guidebook. It's not quite a beginner deck, but if you love them, remember that you don't have to have a standard starting point if you have the passion to understand them. And the artwork will be there to fuel your excitement along the way.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

9. ShadowScapes Tarot Deck

The ShadowScapes Tarot Deck was created by artist Stephanie Pui-Mun Law. There are 78 cards in this stunning deck, splendid with heavenly watercolor images.

This deck also focuses on positive energy, and the companion book is loaded with 78 ephemeral stories to go with each card. A deep lesson lies in each story.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews.

10. Wild Unknown Tarot Deck

The Wild Unknown Tarot Deck is a 78-card deck by artist Kim Krans. Themed like the Gaia Deck with nature as the prominent symbols, instead of painted or colored images, these cards are more similar to hand-drawn sketches with vibrant pops of color in each, giving emphasis to the colored portion.

The Wild Unknown is a very popular deck, and the tarot cards are easy to understand. The companion book is 207 pages of detail on understanding the animal totem symbols in each card.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

11. Morgan Greer Tarot Deck

Published June 1979, the Morgan-Greer deck was drawn by Bill Greer and Lloyd Morgan. This deck has the standard 78 cards, and is a modern deck inspired by the Rider-Waite Tarot Deck with its deep saturated colors and close perspective.

It also has themes of knowledge and wisdom, and the creators of the deck itself designed them to evoke an emotional reaction just by looking at a card.

Available from U.S. Games Systems, Inc., $21.95

12. Robin Wood Deck

Released by Robin Wood in 2002 after working it for years prior, this deck has only increased in popularity. It comes with a 56-page booklet that explains the meanings of each card, and the layouts used. 

The images in the deck are vibrant and feature depictions of nature, and has a more earthy form like the original Rider-Waite Tarot Deck.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Join now for YourTango's trending articles, top expert advice and personal horoscopes delivered straight to your inbox each morning.

13. Mini Tarot Deck

Created by Brigit Esselmont and Eleanor Grosch, this is the perfect pocket deck to carry around or travel with. It provides a modern take on the Raider-Waite deck, and features a gorgeous color scheme of purple, white and gold. 

It also comes with cards that explain how to do a reading in an intuitive way. 

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

14. Gaian Tarot Deck

This deck has the traditional 78 cards, and was created by Joanna Powell Colbert.

Both healing and earthly, the Gaian Deck is all about unity as it reaches out to multicultural communities to help the planet. This deck is both modern and mystic in its nature, as it speaks to loving care of Mother Earth.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

RELATED: How To Read Each Tarot Card In The Suit Of Cups Minor Arcana Deck

15. The OK Tarot Deck

Created by  Adam J. Kurtz, this modern deck was released in 2018. The OK deck ditches traditional religious symbols, and shows a new representation of gender and race, as it is not conforming to the current standards. 

This deck includes the traditional 78 cards, along with a 48-page instruction booklet. Plus, that gorgeous pink color is incredibly unique and fun.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

16. The Marseille Deck 

The Marseille Deck was originally published in the 1930s, and the cards have more of an abstract art style.

Also known as its French name, Tarot de Marseille, many tarot decks take inspiration from this one. It contains 56 cards divided into four suits, and is often found to have its suits in French Bâtons, Épées, Coupes, and Deniers.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

17. Visconti-Sforza Pierpont Morgan Tarocchi Deck

A representation of the oldest decks known, the Visconti-Sforza Pierpont Morgan Tarocchi deck includes 15 incomplete sets. None of the decks are complete and each only has a few face cards.

The beauty and history of these decks make them priceless. While the deck originally held 78 cards, over time cards became lost and now it only holds 74. The deck was supposedly produced around the early 1450s!

Available from U.S. Games Systems, Inc., $45

18. Mystic Mondays Deck

A modern deck known for its bright colors and simplicity, the Mystic Mondays deck is known for the motifs it holds and tropical backgrounds. This deck holds 78 cards created by Grace Duong, and is one of the most modern decks to date.

The deck calls itself a "Deck for the Modern Mystic" and comes with handy instructions. Prepare to hone in on your mystical skills.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

19. Thoth Tarot Deck

Created by occult scholar Aleister Crowley and painted by Lady Frieda Harris, it was named after the ancient Egyptian texts supposedly written by Thoth, the Egyptian god of writing and knowledge.

Currently one of the highest-selling decks, it used to hold 2 extra Magus (Magician) cards, along with its traditional 78 cards.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

20. True Heart Intuitive Tarot Deck

Drawn by actress Rachel True, who starred in the movie "The Craft," these cards present multiple possibilities, drawing off the reader's energy. True has read tarot cards for many years and shared her knowledge through this deck. 

Published as recent as 2020, this deck holds the 78 traditional cards, and includes personal stories from True about Hollywood and what the cards mean for each individual person.

Available on Amazon, check for prices and reviews

RELATED: 16 Powerful Tarot Card Tattoo Ideas & Their Meanings

Amanda Ilene Sawyer is a writer and Mississippi native with a passion for astrology, numerology, and tarot.

YourTango may earn an affiliate commission if you buy something through links featured in this article.