Australia is a treasure chest of opals and buying opals downunder can give you a lot of joy and satisfaction. Being the National stone of Australia, it is believed that at least 95% of the world’s Opals are mined in the outback of South Australia, Queensland and New South Wales. Although not in the same class as Diamonds, Rubies and other precious stones, the Australian opal is a very beautiful gem that is formed by the solidification of water and silicon dioxide over an unimaginably long period of time with the end result being a stone of mesmerizing beauty and quality.
Opals can be found in all the colors in the rainbow and more and can even be said that they seem to mix the colors in the rainbow and form their own beautiful palette of shades such as Crimson, Aqua, brown, grey, black, white, green and orange. What is even more unique is that there are never two opals that look alike and this makes it even more valuable which could be one of the reasons why the value of the Australian opals are appreciating by at least 20% every year.
Of all the opals found in Australia, the Black opals are the most highly prized being the rarest of its kind. They have the unique quality of having various colors such as dark blue, or grey and brown radiating from within the stone or a rainbow of myriad flashes in blue-green hues. Those known as Boulder opals have sometimes smooth and sometimes uneven surfaces with flecks of colors that keep flashing from inside. Light Opals also come in a full range of colors and shows off their vibrant beauty in flecks that are mostly white or light blue. There are of course the lab designed Opals known as Doublets and triplets which has a certain percentage of the genuine stone while the rest contains glass or porcelain. The Common opal on the other hand is not considered a stone of quality and is transparent without a show of any color at all.
It’s important to keep in mind when buying opals downunder that there is a huge variety of these stones available in Australia and as such its not easy to select from the mind boggling range where every stone looks as amazingly beautiful and rich in color as the very next you look at. While your buying options are unlimited, it’s always better to purchase your gemstones from a reputed store where you can be sure of getting quality gems of good value and reasonable price. Anyone who visits Australia will find opals the ideal souvenir to be taken back for their loved ones, not only because of their unsurpassed beauty but also because of their value.
Australian opals can also be bought in the form of jewelry such as earrings, necklaces, rings and bracelets from craftsmen or stores that sell quality jewelry. Its always best to take someone who has a good knowledge of opals when you do you shopping so that you can ensure what you buy is the genuine kind and not some fake look alike for which you would needlessly pay a high price.