19 Gemstones in New Jersey: Where to Find Them and How to Use Them

  1. All You Need to Know When Rockhounding in New Jersey
  2. Best New Jersey Rockhounding Location
  3. Top 19 Gemstones in New Jersey
  4. How to Do Rockhounding in New Jersey
  5. FAQs

Ever ponder where to find gemstones in New Jersey? Beyond its iconic beaches and rich history, New Jersey is a hidden gem for rockhounding. From the northern highlands to the coastal plains, the state brims with diverse crystals and stones.

While places like the West might pop up first for rockhounding adventures, New Jersey proudly showcases its unique geological treasures. 

This guide is your ticket to rockhounding New Jersey. Dive in to discover where to find crystals, Geodes, and Amber. 

With New Jersey’s rich terrain and our expert tips, your gem-hunting journey is set to sparkle. Ready to explore? Let’s unveil New Jersey’s radiant secrets together!

All You Need to Know When Rockhounding in New Jersey

State Symbols
State MineralFranklinite
State GemstoneN/A
State FossilN/A

New Jersey, the “Garden State,” is a treasure trove for rockhounding fans. From the sandy Jersey Shore to the thick Pine Barrens forests, there’s a lot to explore. The state’s unique gem, Franklinite, is found mainly in the town of Franklin. For those looking for more, the northern highlands, part of the Appalachian Mountains, is a hotspot for rockhounding in New Jersey.

The state’s varied wildlife and changing seasons add to its charm. While summer is warm, winter can be snowy. If you’re planning to find gems, spring and fall are the best times. But always check if the sites are open before you go.

Remember, while hunting for gemstones in New Jersey, it’s essential to respect nature. Get the right permits, follow the rules, and avoid leaving any trash behind. This way, New Jersey’s beauty stays untouched for everyone to enjoy.

Best New Jersey Rockhounding Location

RankTop Rockhounding SpotsGemstones Found in New Jersey
1Higbee Beach, Cape MayCape May Diamonds (Quartz Crystals) and Chalcedony.
2Pennington MountainVarious Gem-Quality Minerals
3Burlington CountyAmber, Jasper, and Banded Agates.
4Manasquan BeachCape May Diamonds, Fossils, and Petrified Wood.
5Franklin FurnaceFluorite, Franklinite, Magnetite, and more.
6Pompton RiverVarious Gem-Quality Minerals
8Bergen CountyAgates, Amethyst, Carnelian, and more.
9Snake HillBanded Agates
10The PalisadesBanded Agates, Amethyst, Opal, and Quartz Crystals.

For those who are keen on embarking on a rockhounding journey in New Jersey, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s public access land maps serve as an invaluable resource. 

This official website provides detailed maps and information about public lands in New Jersey, ensuring that rockhounds have the most up-to-date and accurate information for their explorations.

Top 19 Gemstones in New Jersey

The Garden State is not just famous for its rich history and beautiful shores; it’s also a treasure trove for gem enthusiasts, boasting a variety of precious stones waiting to be discovered.


pressed amber on white background

Amber, a fossilized tree resin, has been found throughout New Jersey. One of the most notable spots is Burlington County, where enthusiasts have found beautiful Amber specimens. 

Another location that has yielded Amber is the cretaceous clay pits in Sayreville, offering rockhounds a chance to uncover this ancient gem.

When searching for Amber, it’s essential to look for a warm, golden hue, often translucent. Amber is relatively soft, so a simple digging tool or your hands might suffice. 

However, be gentle to avoid damaging the specimen. Once you spot a potential piece of Amber, it’s crucial to hold it against a light source; genuine Amber will glow with a warm light.

Amber is believed to bring balance, patience, and wisdom to its bearer. It’s also considered a powerful healer, drawing out negativity and revitalizing the spirit.

Cape May Diamonds

Cape May Diamonds stone on a white background
Image Source: flickr.com | Zsaj

Cape May Diamonds are not actual Diamonds but are beautiful Quartz crystals that can be found along the shores of New Jersey. Higbee Beach in Cape May is the most famous location to find these gems. Another spot where these “Diamonds” have been discovered is Manasquan Beach.

When hunting for Cape May Diamonds, keep an eye out for clear, pebble-like stones that resemble uncut Diamonds. These stones can be picked up by hand, and it’s recommended to rinse them in water to get a clearer view. 

Once you find a Cape May Diamond, the primary thing to do is to hold it against the sun; its brilliance will be unmistakable.

Spiritually, Cape May Diamonds are believed to amplify energy and intentions. They’re also associated with clarity, insight, and manifestation.


Prehnite crystal on white background

Prehnite, a beautiful pale green to yellow gemstone, has a special connection with New Jersey. It was first described and named after its discovery in the state, specifically in the Paterson area of Passaic County. 

This region, along with the trap rock quarries of the Watchung Mountains, remains a significant source of Prehnite.

When looking for Prehnite, search for its distinctive pale green hue, often found in botryoidal or globular formations. A standard rock hammer and chisel will be useful tools for extracting larger specimens from the host rock. Upon spotting Prehnite, handling it with care is essential due to its delicate nature.

Prehnite is the stone of prophecy and is believed to enhance intuition and spiritual growth. It’s also associated with inner peace, protection, and fostering a deep connection with nature.


clear quartz on a white background

Quartz, one of the most abundant minerals on Earth, can be found in various locations throughout New Jersey. Notably, the Watchung Mountains are known for their Quartz deposits. Cape May Diamonds, found on the shores of Cape May, are Clear Quartz crystals that resemble uncut Diamonds.

When searching for Quartz, look for its characteristic hexagonal shape and glassy luster. A standard rock hammer and chisel are ideal for extracting Quartz specimens. Once you find a piece, it’s essential to clean it with water to reveal its clarity and brilliance.

Quartz is known as the “Master Healer.” It amplifies energy, enhances psychic abilities, and stimulates the immune system. It also aids in concentration and memory.


Chalcedony on white background

Chalcedony, a form of Quartz, has been discovered in New Jersey, particularly in Higbee Beach, Cape May. This location is known for its beautiful Chalcedony specimens alongside Cape May Diamonds.

A simple digging tool or even your hands might suffice to collect Chalcedony. When you spot a potential piece, it’s crucial to inspect it under sunlight to appreciate its subtle colors.

Chalcedony is believed to bring harmony and balance. It’s also associated with enhancing communication, promoting calmness, and fostering a sense of brotherhood among groups.


polychrome jasper on white background
Image source: Flickr | Laurence

Jasper, an opaque variety of Chalcedony, can be found in Burlington County, New Jersey. This region has yielded beautiful specimens of Jasper, often characterized by their red, yellow, or brown hues.

When hunting for Jasper, look for its smooth, opaque appearance. Simple digging tools are sufficient for collecting Jasper. Once found, it’s essential to polish the stone to enhance its natural colors.

This crystal is believed to provide support during stress, absorb negative energy, and promote courage and determination.

Banded Agates

polished red agate on a white background

Banded Agates have been discovered in various locations in New Jersey, including Bergen County and Snake Hill. These Agates are known for their characteristic bands of multiple colors.

When searching for Banded Agates, watch for stones with distinct color bands. A standard rock hammer and chisel will be useful for extracting larger specimens. Once found, cutting and polishing the stone to reveal its beautiful bands is recommended.

Metaphysically, Banded Agates enhance mental function, improve concentration, and stabilize the aura. They’re also associated with protection, healing, and calming energies.


A tumbled Amethyst crystal on a white background

Amethyst, a purple variety of Quartz, can be found in Bergen County, New Jersey. This region has produced beautiful Amethyst specimens known for their deep purple hues and crystal clarity.

When on the lookout for Amethyst, search for its distinctive purple color. A standard rock hammer and chisel are ideal for extracting amethyst from its host rock. Once spotted, it’s essential to handle it with care due to its delicate nature.

In metaphysical terms, Amethyst is known for its powerful and protective properties. It enhances spiritual awareness, promotes emotional balance, and dispels negative emotions.


opal crystal on a white background

While New Jersey is not primarily known for its Opal deposits, there have been occasional reports of Opal finds, especially in the state’s northern regions. However, these are not as abundant as in other renowned opal-producing areas in the U.S.

Opals are characterized by their play-of-color, displaying a range of hues when viewed from different angles. 

If you’re looking for Opals in New Jersey, having a rock hammer, chisel, and soft brush is essential. Once you find a potential Opal, gently clean it with water to reveal its colors.

Opal is the “Stone of Inspiration,” enhancing imagination and creativity. It’s also believed to amplify one’s traits, bringing characteristics to the surface for transformation.


Datolite on a white background

In Northern New Jersey, particularly around Franklin and Sterling Hill, you can find a special kind of crystal called Datolite. These areas have some of the world’s best Datolite crystals, known for their clear appearance and unique colors.

Datolite crystals usually look clear or whitish, sometimes with a hint of green. You’ll need a regular rock hammer and chisel to collect these crystals. But be careful when handling Datolite because it’s quite delicate.

People believe Datolite has some interesting qualities. They think it can help improve memory and the ability to remember things. Datolite is also thought to make your thinking clearer, so you can process information better and make better decisions.


pyrite geode rock on a white background

In various parts of New Jersey, you can come across a mineral known as Pyrite, often called “Fool’s Gold.” The northern regions, particularly around the Watchung Mountains, have reported findings of Pyrite

You can easily identify Pyrite by its shiny, metallic appearance and golden color. You only need a regular rock hammer and chisel when searching for Pyrite. However, it’s important to remember that once you find a piece, you should keep it dry because Pyrite can change when it gets wet.

Pyrite is considered a protective and intellect-enhancing stone. It’s thought to act as a shield against negative energies and can also help improve memory and the ability to remember things.


polished carnelian on white background

Carnelian, a variety of Chalcedony, has been discovered in New Jersey, particularly in the Stirling region. This area has yielded beautiful Carnelian specimens, characterized by their deep red-to-orange hues.

When on the lookout for Carnelian, search for its distinctive warm colors. Simple digging tools are sufficient for collecting Carnelian. Once found, it’s recommended to polish the stone to enhance its natural colors.

Carnelian is known as the “Stone of Motivation and Endurance.” It boosts confidence, stimulates creativity, and promotes positive life choices.


Franklinite stone on a white background
Image Source: flickr.com | James St. John

New Jersey, particularly the Franklin and Sterling Hill areas, is renowned for its rich deposits of Franklinite. These locations have become a must-visit for mineral enthusiasts from around the world.

When searching in these regions, look for specimens with a characteristic black color and a metallic luster. A standard rock hammer and chisel are ideal tools for extraction. Upon discovery, gently cleaning the specimen can reveal its natural shine.

This mineral is believed to be grounding, helping to balance energies and align the chakras. It’s also associated with clarity of thought and enhanced intuition.


tumbled fluorite on white background

The Franklin Furnace region of New Jersey is known for its beautiful Fluorite specimens, often displaying vibrant colors.

This mineral is easily recognizable by its cubic crystal structure. A standard rock hammer and chisel are sufficient tools for its extraction. Handling with care is crucial due to its delicate nature.

Fluorite is the “Stone of Discernment and Aptitude,” believed to enhance mental clarity, improve decision-making, and protect against negative energies.


A lodestone crystal on a white background

The northern regions of New Jersey, especially around the Watchung Mountains, are known for Magnetite deposits.

This mineral can be identified by its black or brownish-black color. Using a magnet can confirm its identity. Storing it away from electronic devices is essential due to its magnetic properties.

Magnetite is believed to have grounding properties, helping to balance the body and align the chakras. It’s also associated with attracting love, commitment, and loyalty.


Axinite crystal on a white background

While New Jersey is not primarily known for Axinite deposits, occasional finds have been reported in the northern parts of the state.

This mineral often appears as sharp, blade-like crystals with a brownish hue. Using a standard rock hammer and chisel is ideal for its extraction. Handling with care is essential due to its delicate nature.

Axinite is believed to aid in the retrieval of lost memories. It’s also associated with grounding and helping to align the physical and ethereal bodies.


tourmaline on white background

While New Jersey is not a primary source of Tourmaline, occasional finds have been reported, especially in the northern regions.

This gemstone is known for its elongated crystal structure and variety of colors. A standard rock hammer and chisel are the best tools for extraction. Cleaning it gently can reveal its natural colors upon discovery.

Tourmaline is known as a protective stone, shielding its bearer from negative energies. It’s also believed to enhance self-confidence, promote understanding, and foster compassion.


polished serpentine on white background

In New Jersey, Serpentine deposits have been reported in the northern parts of the state, particularly in areas around Hoboken and the surrounding Hudson County. 

These regions have been known to yield beautiful specimens of Serpentine, characterized by their greenish hue and often waxy luster.

When hunting for Serpentine, looking for its distinctive green color, ranging from light to dark shades is essential. A standard rock hammer and chisel are ideal tools for extraction. Upon discovery, gently cleaning the specimen can reveal its intricate patterns and true color.

Serpentine is believed to have a calming and detoxifying effect on the body and mind. It’s also associated with awakening spiritual energies and promoting inner peace.


UV lighted Willemite stone showing green color on a white background
Image Source: flickr.com | Eden, Janine and Jim

Willemite is closely associated with the Franklin and Sterling Hill areas of New Jersey. These locations are world-renowned for their rich deposits of Willemite, which often fluoresce in vibrant colors under ultraviolet light.

When searching for Willemite, having a UV light on hand is beneficial to check for fluorescence. The mineral often appears clear to whitish crystals, sometimes with a greenish or reddish hue. A rock hammer and chisel are the go-to tools for extraction. Once you find a potential piece, viewing it under UV light is a good idea to appreciate its full beauty.

Willemite is believed to enhance spiritual vision and intuition. It’s also associated with grounding energies and promoting harmony within oneself.

Gemstones in New JerseyLocationTools You NeedHealing Properties
AmberBurlington County and Cretaceous clay pits in Sayreville.Digging tool or hands.Balance, patience, and wisdom.
Cape May DiamondsHigbee Beach, Cape May, and Manasquan Beach.HandAmplifies energy, clarity, and manifestation.
PrehnitePaterson area of Passaic County and Watchung Mountains.Rock hammer and chisel.Enhances intuition and inner peace.
QuartzWatchung Mountains and Cape May shores.Rock hammer and chisel.Amplifies energy and enhances psychic abilities.
ChalcedonyHigbee Beach, Cape May.Digging tool or hands.Harmony, communication, and calmness.
JasperBurlington CountyDigging toolsAbsorbs negativity and promotes courage.
Banded AgatesBergen County and Snake Hill.Rock hammer and chisel.Enhances mental function and protection.
AmethystBergen CountyRock hammer and chisel.Protection, spiritual awareness, and balance.
OpalNorthern regions (occasional finds)Rock hammer, chisel, and soft brush.Inspiration and enhances imagination.
DatoliteFranklin and Sterling Hill.Rock hammer and chisel.Improves memory and clearer thinking.
PyriteWatchung MountainsRock hammer and chisel.Protective and intellect-enhancing.
CarnelianStirling regionDigging toolsMotivation, endurance, and confidence.
FrankliniteFranklin and Sterling Hill.Rock hammer and chisel.Grounding and clarity of thought.
FluoriteFranklin FurnaceRock hammer and chisel.Mental clarity and decision-making.
MagnetiteWatchung MountainsRock hammer, chisel, and magnet.Grounding and attracting love.
AxiniteNorthern parts (occasional finds)Rock hammer and chisel.Aids lost memories and aligns bodies.
TourmalineNorthern regions (occasional finds)Rock hammer and chisel.Protection, self-confidence, and understanding.
SerpentineHoboken, Hudson CountyRock hammer and chisel.Calming, detoxifying, and inner peace.
WillemiteFranklin and Sterling Hill.Rock hammer, chisel, and UV light.Enhances spiritual vision and grounding.

How to Do Rockhounding in New Jersey

tools and gears placed on the ground

Understanding rockhounding in New Jersey is crucial, whether you’re a beginner or an expert. This guide will give you the knowledge, equipment, and tips to enjoy New Jersey rockhounding.

Tools and Gear You Need to Dig and Find Crystals in New Jersey

  • Rock Hammer: Essential for breaking rocks and extracting specimens.
  • Chisel: Useful for splitting rocks and revealing hidden gems.
  • UV Light: A must-have for detecting fluorescent minerals like Willemite.
  • Soft Brush: Helps in cleaning and revealing the true colors of the crystals.
  • Safety Goggles: Protects your eyes from flying rock fragments.
  • Durable Gloves: Protect your hands while digging and handling sharp rocks.
  • Bucket or Bag: For collecting and transporting your finds.

How to Pack, Transport, and Cut Crystals You Find in New Jersey

  • Packing: Wrap each specimen individually in newspaper or bubble wrap to prevent damage.
  • Transport: Use sturdy containers or backpacks with separate compartments.
  • Cutting: If you wish to cut or polish your finds, consider using a lapidary machine. Always wear safety goggles and gloves during the process.

Safety Regulations for Rockhounding in New Jersey

  • Permission: Always seek permission for rockhounding on private property.
  • Environment: Respect the environment. Avoid digging in protected areas and always refill any holes you dig.
  • Safety First: Stay aware of your surroundings, especially when rockhounding near cliffs or water bodies.

Tips for Rockhounding Like a Pro in New Jersey

  • Research: Utilize resources like the “Rockhounding in New Jersey Map” to identify potential locations.
  • Join a Club: Consider joining a local rockhounding club to gain insights and share experiences.
  • Patience is Key: Rockhounding requires patience. Take your time, and enjoy the process.
  • Document: Keep a journal of your findings, noting the location and characteristics of each specimen.

Disclaimer: Rockhounding regulations and locations can vary from state to state. Always conduct thorough research before embarking on a rockhounding adventure. The information provided here is for general guidance, and adhering to local rules and regulations is essential.


What Gemstones Can I Find While Rockhounding in New Jersey?

New Jersey boasts Amber, Cape May Diamonds (Quartz), Chalcedony, and more.

Where to Find Crystals in New Jersey?

Top spots include Higbee Beach, Cape May, Pennington Mountain, and Burlington County.

Where to Find Geodes in New Jersey?

New Jersey lacks geodes, but local rockhounding clubs might offer insights.

Where to Find Amber in New Jersey?

Burlington County and the Cretaceous clay pits in Sayreville are known for Amber finds.

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