FX Excursions

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Dig Your Own Diamonds in Arkansas

by Edward Mack

Mar 23, 2015

© Kelpfish | Dreamstime


There is only one place in the world where you can mine for diamonds. It’s not in Africa. It’s not in Russia. It’s right here in the United States. At Arkansas’ Crater of Diamonds State Park, visitors can dig their own gems and — even better — keep what they find.


Crater of Diamonds State Park is located just outside Murfreesboro, Ark., on an ancient volcano, where diamonds and other semi-precious stones flourish. Visitors are invited to scour the 37.5-acre field routinely plowed to bring new soil to the surface. Besides diamonds, rock hounds can find amethyst, jasper, garnet and more than 40 types of rocks and minerals.


Digging in Diamonds State Park, Murfreesboro, Arkansas © Doug Wertman | Flickr

Digging in Diamonds State Park, Murfreesboro, Arkansas © Doug Wertman | Flickr


Diamond hunters are offered three ways to search for the stones: They can search on the surface, dig and screen or dig deep holes in tailings. The latter method is usually employed by experienced hunters. All the necessary gear can be rented at the facility for a low fee. A screen and a shovel run $2.50 a piece. But you are also welcome to bring your own equipment. Just remember, nothing motorized is allowed. The entrance fee for adults is $8 and for children 6–12, $5. And pets are welcome.


Ok, that sounds like a fun afternoon, but are the diamonds really valuable? Well, yes and no. Crater of Diamonds is where the world’s only perfect diamond, the Strawn-Wagner Diamond, was discovered. That diamond was worth more than $30,000 and is now on display at the park. Other notable diamonds include the largest ever found in the United States and the flawless Okie Dokie Diamond. In total, more than 29,000 diamonds have been found at the park. Most of these, however, are too small to cut. But they still make for a great piece of jewelry!



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