Ethiopian Opals

Whilst 95% of the Worlds Opal has been discovered in Australia to date, some stunning opals have been found in a district called Welo in Ethiipian, North Africa. The landscape of Ethiopia is absolutely stunning and offers some of the most beautiful views in the world. Ethiopian Opals are just as beautiful to match this incredible place. These opals are very distinct looking and have only just been recently discovered in 1994. They are crystal and milky white type opals (precious opal), fire opal and black opal and often showcase high levels of brightness, colours and unique colour patterns such as honeycomb and rolling shimmers. These opals are often used in princess ring designs where a circular floating angelic ring of small diamonds is cast around the outside of the centre opal piece. These rings...

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Opal Galaxy Background

Learn About Opals

How are Opals made? Opal is formed from a solution of silicon dioxide and water. As water runs down through the earth, it picks up silica from sandstone, and carries this silica-rich solution into cracks and voids , caused by natural faults or decomposing fossils. As the water evaporates, it leaves behind a silica deposit. This cycle repeats over very long periods of time, and eventually opal is formed. It’s believed that perhaps 30 million years ago, lots of silica was released into a solution which filled cracks in the rocks, layers in clay, and even some fossils. Some of them became precious opals. It takes about 5 to 6 million years to make a 1 cm opal to mature. Where do most Opals come from? More than 90% of the world’s precious opals come from Australia, and the...

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How is Opal Formed?

More than 90% of the world's precious opals come from Australia, and the rest can be found in other parts of the world such as Mexico, Brazil, Indonesia, Czech Republic, Ethiopia and USA. Opals from Mexico (called "Mexican Opal") has more water and is transparent or extremely translucent. Opal is formed in different ways; depending on where they are found around the world. Please note that this explains the ‘scientific’ way of how opals are formed, apposed to the magical dreamtime stories of how the native Australians (Aboriginals) believe that opals are formed. Hydrophane Opals. Many of the opals mined in Ethiopia, especially from the Welo deposits, are hydrophane opals. "Hydrophane" is a name used for a porous opal that has the ability to absorb water. A change in color or transparency often accompanies the water...

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coober pedy opals

Coober Pedy Opals

Coober Pedy is an outback desert town located in South Australia in Australia, around 900km north of Adelaide on the Stuart Highway. The Stuart Highway is one of Australia’s major highways that runs from Darwin, thru Alice Springs, Ayers Rock, Coober Pedy and down to Adelaide. Coober Pedy is a town that is very famous for being the best source in the world of precious crystal and white opal. It is the reason why Coober Pedy is known as the opal capital of the world.  It is located at the very bottom of the artisan basin, where the flood of water lye within Australia’s inland areas which is what created Opal. Coober Pedy is also a famous tourist destination, not only for the the opals but also for its large amount of underground residences. There...

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Opals Stories

Aboriginal Stories of Opals

Indigenous Australians, or better known as Aboriginal people have lived in Australia since the beginning of time. There are many stories of dreamtimes’ since the beginning of time that tell beautiful stories of how Australia was created. A constant creature within the dreamtime is the Rainbow Serpent; a giant rainbow snake that formed the main rivers through-out Australia when he slithered across the land in search of water to the oceans. The water in Australia is said to be blessed by the Rainbow Serpent, as water is one of the necessities of life. Without the Great Artisian Basin, a body of water under the Australian Earth, Opal would not have been formed. There are therefor great connections between the Rainbow Serpant at the Opals of Australia. Australian Opal has been discovered in many Aboriginal tribal...

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