The 33 Best Spots To Find And Mine For Quartz In Florida In 2024

By Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

| Updated

The 33 Best Spots To Find And Mine For Quartz In Florida In 2024

By Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

Updated

While Florida isn’t the first place that comes to mind for quartz hunting, that’s exactly what makes it so exciting. It’s not as abundant as in other states, but its rarity makes each discovery all the more special.

If you want to find quartz in Florida, you’ve got to know where to look. Some of the best places to start your Florida quartz quest include Crystal River, Tampa Bay, Suwannee River Mine, Withlacoochee River, Honeymoon Island, and many others.

Whether you’re wading through a river or scouring the ground in a dry, rocky area, the thrill of discovering quartz in Florida is overwhelming. If you’re up for this rewarding journey, join us as we keep movin’ (and discussin’)!

What Is Florida Quartz Anyway?

Cluster of clear quartz crystals
Clear quartz photo provided by and available for purchase at EthixCrystalCo

Quartz is a common gem made up of silicon and oxygen, two of the most abundant elements on Earth. It can be found in many colors, like clear, pink, purple, and even black.

Identifying quartz is pretty challenging, but it has unique features that you can look for. It’s hard, has a glassy luster, and often forms in beautiful, regular shapes as crystals. That’s why people love using it in jewelry and for decoration.

But it’s not just pretty to look at. It also has many practical uses. Quartz is used in making glass, electronics, and even watches. It can turn pressure into electric energy, a property called piezoelectricity. This makes it super useful in technology.

Quartz’ value varies a lot, depending on many factors. Those with clear and beautifully formed crystals can be quite valuable. Others, like common white quartz, are more abundant and less pricey.

This gem is commonly found in places such as mountains, riverbeds, and areas where volcanic activity has happened.

The Types Of Quartz Found In Florida

You may want to watch out for the following types of quartz that you might encounter during your exploration in our state.

  • Clear quartz
  • Drusy quartz
  • Milky quartz
  • Smoky quartz

If you’re interested in other great finds, you can also check out our guide to the crystal mines in Florida.

How We Found The Best Quartz Locations in Florida
When it comes to choosing the best options for finding Florida quartz there are plenty of things we consider. Many of the best locations are closely guarded secrets which can make it really difficult for more casual rock hunters to find success. The key factors in our recommendations are:

  • The deep experience and understanding of our team about the area
  • Recommendations from local groups and clubs
  • How easy it is to get the a particular location
  • Safety and potential hazards when collecting
  • Weighing private and public locations
  • The ability for both experienced and novice rock enthusiasts to find great samples

With these factors in mind we’ve been able to put together a fantastic list that just about anyone can use!

The Best Places To Find Quartz In Florida

A closed gwindel smoky quartz crystal on adularia
Smoky quartz on adularia photo provided by @finemineralphotography

Florida gem mine sites are abundant, but if you want to focus exclusively on finding quartz, below are the best spots to visit. We hope you’ll have the same successful hunting experience that we had in these places!

Always Confirm Access and Collection Rules!

Before heading out to any of the locations on our list you need to confirm access requirements and collection rules for both public and private locations.

These requirements are subject to change without notice and may differ from what we state below.

Always get updated information directly from the source ahead of time to ensure responsible rockhounding.

Crystal River

One of the waterways in Crystal River with amazing crystal-clear waters

Crystal River, located in Citrus County, is nestled on the Gulf Coast. It’s a small city that’s famous for its clear, spring-fed rivers and lush natural surroundings.

The terrain around Crystal River is quite flat, typical of Florida’s landscape. But don’t let that fool you— there’s plenty to explore.

Its geology is dominated by limestone, which has been shaped over time by water. This has created an incredible network of springs and underwater caves. While limestone is a key part of the area’s geology, its drusy quartz deposits are equally interesting.

If you want to go here, you can drive about 1.5 hours north of Tampa or 1.5 hours west of Orlando. The drive itself is scenic, taking you through some of our beautiful natural landscapes.

Make sure to review Florida’s local collecting guidelines and keep them in mind while exploring here and the other places we’ll share with you.

Where we found quartz in Crystal River

You can find amazing drusy quartz if you search through the area of limestone quarry seams and vugs in Crystal River.

Rock pick being used

The tools every crystal hunter will need

When you're out looking for crystals having the right tools for the job is very important. You don't need a lot for most trips but there are a handful that are critical and will make your life a lot easier.

We get asked a lot about the equipment we use. Over the years we've found a handful of tools that we recommend to both new and experienced crystal miners which we outline in great detail in our complete rockhounding equipment guide. These are quality options that also happen to be relatively inexpensive.

Below are the basic tools that make your life so much easier and save you a ton of time. Check out the full guide to see everything we recommend bringing. One quick note, as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases but we try very hard to only recommend gear we would use ourselves and often recommend brands you can't find on Amazon.

At a minimum you should have:

1 - Sturdy rock hammer: The Estwing Rock Pick is our standard

2 - Rugged chisels: Try Kendo' 3-piece Chisel Set

3 - Compact shovel: The Koleiya 28-inch shovel works well

4 - Rock screen pan: The Wazakura Soil Sieve Set fits the bill

5 - Eye protection: DeWalt Safety Glasses are cheap and comfortable

6 - Head protection: Malta's Safety Helmet has been our go-to

7 - Jewelers lens with at least 20x magnification: Jarlink's Jewelers Loop is perfect

The crystal-finding books that we use most

There are also a few books that have been extremely helpful in the search for gems. These books have great recommendations and tips:

National Audubon Society Field Guide to Rocks and Minerals: North America 

Southeast Treasure Hunter's Gem & Mineral Guide 

Earth Treasures: The Southeastern Quadrant 

We provide links to find these tools on Amazon but some can also be found at your local hardware stores. For more recommendations check out the link to our full tool guide above.

Tampa Bay

A long beach shore at Tampa Bay with a few visitors enjoying swimming and sunbathing

Tampa Bay is a large natural harbor and shallow estuary. It’s connected to the Gulf of Mexico and is surrounded by the Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Clearwater areas. It’s known for its beautiful beaches, warm climate, and vibrant ecosystems.

Geographically, its terrain is mostly flat, with sandy soil and coastal areas. It has a mix of developed urban areas and natural landscapes, including mangroves and marshes.

The area doesn’t have a lot of rocky outcrops or mountains, but the coastal and underwater geography is shaped by the interaction of the sea with the land.

Tampa Bay is easily accessible by road, with major highways connecting it to other parts of Florida and the United States. If you’re from farther away, you can visit via plane as there’s the Tampa International Airport.

Where we found quartz in Tampa Bay

You can find quartz among the beach alluvials of Tampa Bay. These pieces are often brought in by rivers and streams or eroded from larger rocks.

Suwannee River Mine

View of the Suwannee River looking like a painting

Located near the famous Suwannee River, the Suwannee River Mine is steeped in natural beauty and geological wonders. The river itself is a historic landmark, known for its meandering path through our state’s scenic landscapes.

The area around the Suwannee River Mine is quite diverse. It’s characterized by a mix of dense forests, wetlands, and the river’s winding waterways. Its terrain is mostly flat or gently rolling, which makes exploring it relatively easy and enjoyable.

Geologically, the Suwannee River region is intriguing because it’s part of the Florida Platform, a stable continental crustal block. It doesn’t have the typical rocky mountains or cliffs. Instead, it’s dominated by sedimentary rocks like limestone, formed from ancient sea beds.

Reaching the Suwannee River Mine area is a real adventure. It’s located in North Florida, accessible by several major highways. The closest cities are Live Oak and Branford, and from there, you can drive to various access points along the river.

Where we found quartz in the Suwannee River Mine

If you want to find quartz at the Suwannee River Mine, make sure to explore the river beds or the sedimentary layers of the area.

Withlacoochee River

Scenic view of the north side of the Withlacoochee River showing its peaceful waters and lush forests

Withlacoochee River stretches over 141 miles and winds its way through several Florida counties. It’s not only a haven for wildlife but also a playground for those interested in geology and rock hunting.

This river is unique because it flows north, unlike most rivers in the country. The terrain around it varies, featuring a mix of dense forests, swamps, and marshes. This creates a diverse habitat and a picturesque setting for outdoor adventures.

While our state is generally flat and known for its sandy soils, the river’s surroundings offer a bit more variety. It’s part of the Central Florida Ridge, which means there are some higher elevations and sandy hills. These features contribute to the potential for finding quartz.

If you’re coming from Tampa and you want to go here, it’s a northward drive, roughly an hour and a half away. A popular starting point is the Withlacoochee State Trail, which runs along part of the river and offers great spots for rock hunting.

Where we found quartz in the Withlacoochee River

Quartz is usually found in the Withlachoochee River in small quantities, often mixed in with other sedimentary materials in the riverbed. You can search for them on the riverbanks and the river’s surrounding areas.

Honeymoon Island

Aerial view of the white sands of Honeymoon Island with a couple near on its shores

Honeymoon Island is a state park located off the coast near Dunedin. Connected to the mainland by the Dunedin Causeway, it’s famous for its beautiful beaches, nature trails, and an abundance of wildlife.

It’s a barrier island, which means it’s a coastal landform and a type of dune system that’s separated from the mainland. It has a mix of sandy beaches and coastal mangrove swamps.

You’ll find lots of shells and driftwood along the shore, but the real excitement is in the possibility of finding quartz pieces. This island was formed by wave action and currents, which means it’s constantly changing.

Getting to Honeymoon Island is easy and fun. If you’re coming from Tampa, it’s just a short drive of about 30 minutes to Dunedin and then across the Dunedin Causeway.

Where we found quartz in the Honeymoon Island

The Gulf of Mexico’s waters can bring various rocks and minerals to the Honeymoon Island shores. While finding large quartz crystals here is rare, you might come across small quartz grains mixed in with the sand, washed up on the beach, or among other rocks.

Other Great Places To Find Florida Quartz

Two transparent crystals of quartz without matrix
Raw quartz photo provided by Weinrich Minerals

Looking for more places to explore? We’ve listed down more spots where you can find Florida quartz of different types:

Our recommendations by county

County Location
Citrus Cross Florida Barge Canal
Citrus Red Level Dolomite pit
Clay Green Cove Springs deposit
Duval Atlantic Beach
Duval Humphries Gold Corp Mine
Hamilton Swift Creek Mine
Hernando Vulcan Materials Company
Hillsborough Ballas Point
Hillsborough Davis Islands
Indian River Vero Beach Placer
Marion Cummer Lime & Manufacturing Company Quarry
Marion M.M. Thomas Flint Rock Corporation Mine
Pinellas Clearwater Beach alluvials
Polk Fort Meade Mine
Polk Clear Spring Mine
Polk Homeland Mine
Polk East Bay alluvials
Polk Kingsford Mine
Santa Rosa Pensacola Bay Placer
Santa Rosa Santa Rosa Island
St. Johns/td>

Guana River State Park
St. Lucie Fort Pierce
Sumter Center Hill Quarry

Common Quartz-Hunting Questions

A single smoky quartz crystal perched on a white feldspar matrix
Smoky quartz on feldspar photo provided by Saphira Minerals

Finally, before you head out here, we’ll guide you through the common questions when it comes to finding quartz:

Is it illegal to collect quartz in Florida?

In Florida, the legality of collecting quartz, or any other rocks and minerals, largely depends on where you are and the specific regulations of that area.

Generally, on public lands like state parks and national forests, collecting rocks, including quartz, is either restricted or completely prohibited to preserve natural resources and the environment.

However, on private land, you are usually free to collect rocks and minerals as long as you have the landowner’s permission. Some specific sites and mines also allow quartz collecting for a fee.

It’s always important to research and respect the rules of each location you visit, as regulations can vary widely. Check with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection website if you need more information.

The Best Places To Buy Quartz In Florida

A peak through the front store window of As Above So Below showing different rocks and minerals on display and shoppers inside

If you prefer a more relaxing way to acquire quartz from Florida, you may opt to visit our local rock and mineral shops.

Some of our best ones are the following:

About Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

Keith Jackson is an avid rockhound who is constantly exploring new sites to expand his collection. He has worked as a professional Geologist for over 20 years and holds a PhD in Geology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a Masters Degree in Geology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a Bachelors Degree in Geology from the University of Connecticut.

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