Crystals and stones give us a glimpse into different areas of the world. They allow us to hold a piece of Brazil or Sri Lanka or Bolivia in our hands. It’s as close as we can come to visiting a place without actually going there or just seeing it on T.V. Still, nothing compares to seeing nature…well, in nature! It can be easy to forget that these pretty gifts from Mother Earth have to be grown under the surface for millions of years, and don’t just pop up in our favorite crystal stores looking all polished and perfect. Traveling is a great reminder of the beauty of the natural process. Looking at the red sandstone sculptures of Arches in Utah, or at the basalt columns of The Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland, you come face to face with the majestic way that these wonders have formed and will continue to develop long after you’re gone. Venturing around the world to geological marvels gives you a greater understanding and appreciation for the crystals you have at home. Even if you can’t book a ticket to travel to some far off land where crystals fill caves, there are geological phenomenons occurring everywhere. While this is a list of some of the most drool-worthy, dream destinations nature can provide, it’s also a reminder to get out there and shift your perspective on what amazing geological finds are near you right now.
Dream Destinations for Crystal Lovers
1. Gibson Steps, The Twelve Apostles — Australia
Giant pillars of limestone shoot out of the shore, standing guard before the tall cliffs of Port Campbell National Park in Australia. No must-see list of geological curiosities is complete without these twelve massive rock stacks, known locally as The Twelve Apostles. Years of durability inconsistencies within the cliff range caused the stacks to breakaway from the cliff range into the sea. Standing strong now, these limestone skyscrapers remind us of the impermanence of all things, as even this serene setting of stones will fall and wash away with the tides one day. But hopefully not before you get to see it! Photo belongs to Paul Arps.
2. Skaftafell – Iceland
It’s no wonder they film Game Of Thrones in Iceland. Much of the country’s natural backdrop has to be seen to believe it’s not a computer graphic. The wall of basalt crystals off of which a waterfall plummets onto the rocks below is one of those film ready locations. A collection of black crystal columns scale the cliff like a three dimensional mosaic, one on top of the other. It is what works of art aspire to. Photo belongs to Barthwo.
3. Mammoth Cave, Kentucky
Sometimes the greatest treasures are hidden just beneath the surface. This is certainly true in the case of Kentucky’s Mammoth Cave. Appropriately named, this expansive cave is riddled with gypsum crystal. Rigorous restoration efforts have returned tons of stolen gypsum to the site, and pieced together how the crystal once fit in the cave. Visitors can marvel at giant stalactites that drip from the ceiling just as the Native Americans who first entered the cave 4,000 years ago once did. The longest cave system known in the world, this is definitely a crystal hotspot to behold. Photo belongs to Beatrice M.
4. Ankarana National Park — Madagascar
The feeling of being immersed in a scene from Jurassic Park that overcomes you at Ankarana National Park is only appropriate, seeing as these unusual limestone formations developed in the Jurassic era. Luckily, free from dinosaurs, you’re safe to walk the suspension bridge between limestone cliffs and take in awe-inspiring views. Photo belongs to Wikimedia.
5. Mount Roraima — Brazil
A mystical place with years of history and lore, one only needs to see the flat top of this giant mesa peeking through the clouds to understand its allure. Indigenous myths believed the plateau to be the base of a giant tree that produced all the fruits in the world. The sheer size of this plateau’s ascent booms with an intensity that attracts hikers, climbers and tourists alike. Whether you just want to see it from afar, or trek through the jungle to peer up at the flat face that greets the sky, Mount Roraima is definitely one of the dream destinations to put on the bucket list. Photo belongs to Crystal Castle. Photo belongs to Wikimedia Commons.
6. Crystal Castle — Australia
While this Crystal Castle isn’t technically a natural hotspot, it is so immense a collection of crystals, it can’t be overlooked – definitely one of our dream destinations. From an actual labyrinth of rose quartz to the world’s tallest geodes and an amethyst cave you can meditate in, these crystal marvels seem perfectly placed in the Shambala Gardens and other peaceful viewing sites throughout the castle. Photo belongs to Crystal Castle.