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Lightning Ridge black opal from Australia is one of the best-kept secrets in the world of fine gems. It has all of the beauty and fire of more well-known gemstones, but also encapsulates all the colours of the rainbow in a single gemstone. Black Star Opal offers a wide variety of Lightning Ridge opals available from our website, including solid black opals and crystal opals, in many shapes, patterns and sizes. With over 35 years' experience selling quality Australian opal and opal jewellery, we are confident that we can help you find the perfect opal from Lightning Ridge.


You may be familiar with opal from Lightning Ridge from watching the Australian reality television program Outback Opal Hunters or drooling over high end opal jewellery created by top design houses. But whichever way you've stumbled upon this beautiful opal, once you have a taste for the colour, patterns, beauty and magic of these rare and magnificent gems, you'll be hooked and a fan forever.

Located about an eight hour drive north-west of Sydney, Lightning Ridge is renowned as the home of Australia's black opal - a stunning and captivating type of opal that features a dark, or black, body tone and a vibrant rainbow of hues from brilliant red, fiery orange and neon yellow to electric green, striking blue and shimmering hot pinks and purples. Lightning Ridge also produces crystal opals, which feature brilliant colours that pop against translucent or transparent body tones.

Gem quality Lightning Ridge opal showcases a broad range of patterns, all with distinctive names such as Harlequin, Chinese Writing, Pinfire, Chaff, Cat's Eye and more. This type of opal is found in nodules, known as 'nobbies' or in seams, which are flat layers of thick or thin opal. Nobbies are mostly mined at the Cooceran opal fields and around outskirts of Lightning Ridge, while seam opal is found at the Grawin opal fields and surrounds.


Black opals from Lightning Ridge are among the most prized gems in the world. The name is inspired by their solid black bodies, upon which a spectrum of strong, vibrant colours stand out. These gemstones are also renowned for their depth and brilliance, making them perfect for setting into opal jewellery. Black opals come in many shapes and sizes, and no two are exactly alike. They can also range greatly in value depending on the quality of their colour combination and patterns.

Black opals are a premium stone and are highly sought after gems, especially by collectors and high end jewellers who appreciate their unique and stunning beauty. These type of opals display an exquisite range of rich and intense play of colour, especially fiery reds which is the most valuable colour for a black opal (the opal industry calls these stones 'red on black'). 

Black Australian opal is formed in the same way as all other opal stones, but they only occur in certain parts of the world, with the majority of deposits found around Lightning Ridge. These gems form when water seeps into existing fractures and spaces within sandstone or sedimentary rock. Over time, silica-rich solutions slowly seep into these areas creating a unique crystalline structure.

Buying Lightning Ridge Black Opals

If you're looking for a beautiful, one-of-a-kind piece of gemstone jewellery with a dazzling array of colours, then look no further than a black opal. Because of its rarity, finding jewellery set with Lightning Ridge black opals is not as common as those set with diamonds, sapphires or rubies, however this doesn't mean it has to be a confusing or stressful  shopping experience. To help you out, here is our exclusive guide to buying and caring for black opal to boost your confidence when you shop and assist in narrowing down your search to the perfect one. 

1. How is black opal valued and priced?

When buying black opal jewellery, body tone is a key consideration as darker toned stones are priced higher than greyer shades. Pattern is equally important, as the rarer the pattern - such as a Harlequin pattern - the more desirable the black opal. Cut is also an important factor to consider, and we recommend selecting cabochon cut stones that have been shaped into smooth ovals or rounds, which helps showcase the stone’s colour and clarity the best. Size is another determiner of price, as larger stones tend to be more expensive than smaller ones.

2. What should I look for when buying Lightning Ridge opal jewellery?

Black opal jewellery is made up of two components: the stone and the setting. If you are buying a loose stone, pay attention to the shape, size and colour of the gemstone. Make sure it is evenly cut and has an impressive play-of-colour. If you're buying an already set piece of jewelry, check the quality of the setting as well. It's important to make sure all prongs are secure, that there are no chips or cracks on the metal or the opal, and that the stones in the setting have been calibrated for size and colour.

3. What types of black opal jewelry can I buy?

Black opals are highly sought after and are believed to possess mysterious powers. They are said to help heal a broken heart, bring good luck and fortune, and even ward off negative energy. So wearing a piece of black opal jewellery is an excellent way to keep the stone close to you at all times and absorb all of that good ju-ju! Some of the most popular kinds of jewellery you'll find this stone set into are black opal rings - especially black opal engagement rings - as well as black opal earrings or necklaces. Regardless of the type of jewellery you buy, these stones are amongst the most magnificent and captivating you will find in high end accessories today!

4. How much does black opal jewellery cost?

Before you begin shopping, set a budget that's realistic. Decide how much money you can afford to spend on jewellery made with black opal and stick to it. Depending on the quality and size of the gemstone, this type of Australian jewellery can be affordable or quite expensive - even up to $10,000 per carat for a top quality black opal. Also research styles and setting options ahead of time so when you are ready to start browsing, you know what exactly what type of piece you want and where your budget lies. Remember to only shop at reputable online and retail stores that are experts in Lightning Ridge opal to ensure you're only selecting from the best quality and most affordable pieces.

5. How do I take care if my black opal jewellery?

When caring for your black opal jewelry, it's important to follow best practices in order to keep them looking their best. Try to avoid placing them in constant direct sunlight or extreme temperatures, as this could cause the stone to crack. Also, apply perfumes, lotions and other beauty products before you put on your jewelelry - especially if they fature pearls or any other gemstones. Lastly, use a polishing cloth made specifically for jewellery in order to restore their natural shine before and after wearing them.

To store your black opal jewelry, place them in a soft container or box, and separate the pieces with tissue paper to prevent scratches. Since black opals are quite delicate, make sure you keep the box closed while not wearing your jewellery. Also, keep the box away from heat, sunlight and any harsh chemicals - all of which could potentially cause damage. With regular care and maintenance, your black opal jewelry will stay looking its absolute best for many years to come.

These gorgeous pieces of natural Australian gemstone artistry not only make perfect gifts for friends and family, but also great additions to your own jewellery collection. Whether you’re looking for something special for an anniversary or birthday present, or something to treat yourself with, black opal jewellery is the perfect choice. If you're looking to buy black opal direct from a reputable opal gemstone dealer, look no further than Black Star Opal. It's always good to understand the worth and quality of your black opal gemstone and jewellery to ensure you get a good price, and we're delighted to help you every step of the way on your journey.


Black Star Opal is a specialty online jewellery and gemstone boutique that offers some of the finest Lightning Ridge opals available on the market today. If you're searching for a specific type of opal stone, we have a wide variety of colours and cuts from which you can choose. We also offer custom pieces if you would like something unique or special made just for your needs. Our expert opal team is always happy to help customers find exactly what they need in terms of jewelry or opal gemstones, no matter how big or small the order.

Quality ethically sourced, natural Australian opal gemstones and opal jewellery at reasonable prices is what we pride ourselves on. We have been a member of the Australian opal industry since 1969, originally as opal miners and global exporters of Lightning Ridge opal. As an established and reputable wholesale and retail opal gemstone business, we are directly connected to an extensive network of Australian opal miners in Lighting Ridge, Coober Pedy and the opal fields of Queensland. We also work closely with expert opal jewellery designers and manufacturers. This ensures our products are sourced directly from the miner, and our jewellery prices remain competitive and affordable for all budgets.

We stand by our Lightning Ridge opals and Lightning Ridge opal jewelry with a 30-day money back guarantee. If your purchase is not quite what you were after, or you’d like to exchange for another item, we’re more than happy to help. We love seeing our customers happy and satisfied, and are pleased to assist with any questions you have about Australian opals or our opal, gemstone and crystal jewellery.


Black Star Opal offers a convenient worldwide delivery service to wherever you need to send Lightning Ridge opal jewellery and opals. We take care of the cost of standard worldwide shipping for all orders over AUD $200 and provide free insurance for all orders over approximately AUD $600 to protect against theft, loss or damage during delivery. Express domestic and international shipping options are available for a small additional fee. 

Shipping is provided through Australia's national postal service, Australia Post, which offers a range of convenient delivery solutions. Parcels sent within Australia are shipped via Parcel Post or Express Post, which features a unique tracking number and may require a signature on delivery. Parcels sent outside Australia are shipped via International Standard or International Express Air Mail, which also features a unique tracking number and may require signature on delivery. We can also ship globally through FedEx upon request, however this will incur an extra cost that will vary depending on your location.

Once your order is shipped you will receive a confirmation email with a tracking number. You can enter your tracking number here to follow your order's progress to your door. Standard delivery to most countries is usually less than two weeks, while delivery within Australia is usually between two to four working days. Due to current global Covid-related shipping issues, Black Star Opal cannot guarantee the above delivery times. We recommend you check the Australia Post website for up to date shipping estimates before ordering. Approximate shipping timelines provided do not include additional time your package may be held by customs for clearance in your country. Please note: Black Star Opal is not liable for any extra duties or taxes your country may charge on an imported item. It is the responsibility of the customer to research and pay any additional charges in their country.

If you have any queries about our Lightning Ridge opal jewelry delivery service or shipping policy, please get in touch with our friendly team - we are here to help and love assisting with any questions you may have.



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