Painted wood turtles can grow to a maximum length of 20 cm. It has a dome-shaped carapace and the plastron has a continuous ventral line. It has red stripes on its body and it has webbed feet.
Painted wood turtles can be kept as pets, and it has long been imported into the various parts of Asia, such as Japan, Taiwan and China. The nominate subspecies is the most common subspecies kept in captivity. They will eat commercial turtle food, and will also eat plant matter.