Greetings from Crater of Diamonds State Park! While some people plan extended stays at the Crater, others make a quick stop to spend an hour or so searching for diamonds. A few minutes may be all it takes to find a diamond, but how do you make the most of your time when you don’t have a lot to spare? Here are a few essential experiences if your time at the park has a short deadline.
After purchasing admission to search for diamonds online or at the visitor center, stop by our museum to see real uncut diamonds. Many visitors spend hours at the park without knowing what a diamond looks like; visit our diamond display to see what you are searching for!
Next, exit through the back of the visitor center and head toward the diamond search area. Along the way, you'll enter the Diamond Discovery Center, an open-air facility where you can learn more about large diamond finds and have your rocks and minerals identified. While you’re here, grab a free paper sack to hold onto the rocks and minerals you find.
Some people spend lots of time and money gathering the best tools for diamond searching. The good news is you don’t need any specialized equipment to find one! The easiest way to begin searching quickly is to surface search. Diamonds have a brilliant, metallic luster that sets them apart from most other rocks and minerals. Look for this glittery shine as you scan the surface of the diamond search area.
Walk slowly, following the plowed rows. Most diamonds are small, so look closely. Put anything that looks interesting in your sack for closer inspection later. Surface searching allows you to cover more ground in less time, giving you a fair chance of finding a diamond without a lot of work. Many large diamonds are found right on top of the ground at the park, often in less than an hour!
Though diamonds are our chief attraction, there are many other rocks and minerals to collect and take home. One that is easy to find here is called lamproite. This rough, brittle volcanic rock is black or green and can be found throughout the search area.
Molten lamproite erupted from the Crater of Diamonds about 100 million years ago, carrying diamonds along with it. Although diamonds aren’t typically found in lamproite today, this unique rock is fairly rare outside of the park, making it a great souvenir!
As you search for diamonds, you may also notice several large shovels with panels scattered throughout the search area. These signs indicate areas where some of our most prolific diamonds have been found. Take a few moments to read about these historic gems and the people who found them. They can inspire you in your own diamond search!
Before leaving, stop by the Diamond Discovery Center to have your finds identified. If you run out of time, no worries! Take two or three clear photos of your most interesting finds when you get home, and email them to us at [email protected]. Our staff will take a look and let you know what you may have found.
Although your time here may be limited, these essential encounters will help you make the most of your visit to Crater of Diamonds State Park. No matter how long you spend, we hope your first visit here won’t be your last!