Hello Everyone! Here, I’ve compiled a list of the best beginner’s tarot decks! These decks are all easy to understand, easy to learn, and easy to interpret. When buying your first tarot deck, make sure to choose one that really speaks to you. The decks with more imagery and symbols can be easy to look at and interpret for yourself which is very helpful when you’re just starting out. Although you may choose any deck as a beginner deck, hopefully these are a bit easier to learn than most. Choose wisely, you never forget your first tarot deck!
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The first deck on this list really must to be The Universal Rider Waite Tarot Deck. This is probably the most popular and classic tarot deck in the English speaking world. Any version of this deck will be very similar. While studying Tarot you have probably noticed that this deck is the most reoccurring. Published in 1910, the deck was illustrated by Pamela Colman Smith with the instructions from the mystic A.E. White. Numerous learning material often references The Rider-Waite deck as a foundation when first learning tarot. It was one of the first decks that included complex imagery for not only the major arcana but also the minor. This is probably the safest bet for beginners; the hidden symbols and imagery really help to understand the true meaning of the card. Any of the variations of this deck are also helpful, it has been redone many times over all the years.
The Robin Wood deck made by Robin Wood is also a great deck for beginner’s, because is has very similar meaning to the Rider-Waite deck which is considered a classic. This deck is often labeled a pagan deck, replacing the old christian and catholic symbolism with earthy and natural symbols and beings. This deck is very fairytale-esque which some people really enjoy, and others seem to hate. If you are a nature and woodland loving individual you will really enjoy this deck.
The Revelations tarot deck is very colorful, modern, and aesthetically pleasing. Wong’s style of art is unique and interesting Alot of this deck uses geometric art and shapes which really gives it a contemporary feel. Great for a first deck! This deck is very unique in that you are able to see the symbolism for the reversed meaning of the card when drawn in reverse! It’s like having 2 cards in one. When flipped the meaning will be obvious. Great deck for beginners, especially if you plan on reading reversed cards as well!
This deck is known as the Easy Tarot, and I’ve also seen it advertised as the Gilded tarot. The easy tarot was actually my first tarot deck ever! I remember my mom buying it for me because it was the cheapest deck in Barnes and Nobel! So, I really had to include it on this list. The imagery is helpful when looking for meaning in the art. With a more modern take and interpretation, the colors are vibrant and the shading gives it an almost 3D effect. Yet another deck that keeps the same symbolism and basic layout as the Rider-Waite deck, with a modern contemporary twist. Each card appears to be set in the cosmos, rather than traditional decks. The vibrant colors really jump when viewing this deck in person. If you are interested in this steampunk fantasy-esque deck, it would be the perfect first set!
The Llewellyns’ Classic tarot deck, is just that, a classic. Relying heavily on the Rider Waite deck for most of the imagery and symbols, it also has a clear and distinct modern tone that is refreshing. If you are tired of seeing the Rider-Waite traditional artwork, this deck may be a great compromise for you. This Llewellyn Classic set is extremely easy to read and understand, making it perfect for those who are new to tarot.
If you have been searching for tarot decks it is likely you’ve already seen The Wild Unknown tarot deck. It is quickly becoming a modern classic, at least with the new wave generation of readers! The designs are simple yet stunning at the same moment. About a year or two ago I chose to buy this deck, as I was rediscovering and rekindling my interest in tarot; it had been over 5 years since I had bought a new deck. It was an easy transition relearning the meanings with this deck! The contrast and emphasis of the vibrant colors and black and white background, really sold me on this one. I believe this deck is a good first deck because its use of animals and nature are easy references when learning the meanings of the cards. This is a deck you will not get tired of looking at!
The “Tarot of the New Vision” tarot deck is quite amazing. The art depicted on the cards reveals what is happening behind the scenes of the classic cards we all know and love. This imaginative concept really brings the tarot into reality, and allows us to see what is going on on the other side. I know that some would not place this deck and the next deck listed in an article for beginner’s because someone just starting out simply wouldn’t appreciate or understand the depth of this deck. I believe that this deck could help you truly learn the meaning and impact of each card right from the beginning!
The In Between Tarot Deck is extremely unique and insightful in that it shows the transition between each card in the major arcana. For example, the Hierophant card shows what is happening before the lovers card and between the Hierophant and the Lovers Card. The fool card is showing what is happening between the fool and the magician card. I chose to add this deck to the list because I feel that it could give a beginner a great grasp on how connected the major arcana is. This would be a great supplement deck to memorize and understand the meanings of the cards!
Complete attributions for each tarot deck-
- Rider-Waite Public Domain
- Robin Wood Tarot by Robin Wood © 2002 Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. 2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125. All rights reserved, used by permission
- Revelations by Zach Wong © 2005 Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. 2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125. All rights reserved, used by permission
- Gilded Tarot by Ciro Marchetti & Barbara Moore © 2004 Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. 2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125. All rights reserved, used by permission
- Llewellyn’s Classic Tarot by Barbra Moore & Eugene Smith © 2014 Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. 2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125. All rights reserved, used by permission
- The Wild Unknown Tarot
- Tarot of the new vision by Lo Scarabeo © 2003 Lo Scarabeo srl, via Cigna 110, 10155 Torino, Italy. All rights reserved, used by permission.
- In Between Tarot Kit by Franco Rivolli & Janine Worthington © 2019 Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. 2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125. All rights reserved, used by permission
Make sure to also check out the following articles if you can’t find a tarot deck that suits you here: