Sometimes huge, diameter reported to max. ca. 1 m, oral arms to ca. 5 m or more, but in many populations reported smaller, more typically to ca. 50 cm diameter. Exumbrella smooth. Tentacles in adult 24, 3 per octant; clefts between tentacular lappets roughly uniform; oral arms much frilled distally; terminal region of mouth-arm sinuous to spiral, lacking such structures. Radial septa (as seen from below) slightly thicker than in other Chrysaora spp., constant in width except at inner end where they widen abruptly with pear-shaped outline.
Coloration greatly varied. Different color varieties each seldom recorded, their relative abundance in space and time being unknown. Known varieties are: (1) nearly (?actually) colorless and translucent, with faint orange radial stripes; (2) same, with triangles infilled with similar pigment; (3) triangles more densely infilled with finely reticulate dark red-brown pigment, with pale bands between each "triangle" and next; (4) with ground color uniformly distributed across bell, both within triangles and over bands between. Ground color may also be orange, or white; bell may have dark purple edge; tentacles may be dark purple; mouth-arms may be white/translucent-colorless. Marginal tentacles white (recent photos) to red with yellowish bases (type description).
Sting recorded as irritating but not severe, lasting 30-60 mins.