Most Expensive Opal

Have you ever directly seen an opal? It is a stunning stone with a unique play of colors that can mesmerize anyone.

The term "Most Expensive Opal" brings to mind a gem of extraordinary beauty and value, a rarity that captivates collectors and enthusiasts alike. Opals are renowned for their unique play of color, displaying a kaleidoscope of hues that dance and shift before the eyes.

There are many types of opal in the market,  but some of them are more expensive than others. In this article, we will discuss the most expensive opal in the world and what makes them so valuable.

Origin Of Opal

Opal is a gemstone of fascinating history and myth, believed to be over 100 million years old. It is formed from a solution of silicon dioxide and water. When water runs down through the earth, it picks up silica from sandstone, and this silica-rich solution finds its way into cracks and voids in the rock.

Over time, the water evaporates, leaving behind a deposit of silica that eventually forms opal. This process of formation contributes to the unique characteristics of each opal, making every piece a one-of-a-kind gem.

Opals are primarily mined in Australia, which is the world’s leading source of premium opals. However, other countries like Ethiopia, Brazil, and Mexico also contribute to the opal market, offering distinctive gems to those regions.

The Ancient Romans considered opal a symbol of hope and purity, while the Ancient Greeks believed it could grant the power of prophecy. Today, it remains a gemstone coveted for its stunning beauty and the mysteries it holds within.

Most Expensive Opal (Top 10)

The most expensive opal is discovered in various parts of the world and can fetch different prices according to their rarity, quality, and demand. The following are the top 10 most expensive opals ever sold:

  • The Flame Queen Opal - $3.6 million

The Flame Queen Opal commands an astonishing $3.6 million, thanks to its incredible size, lustrous play-of-color, and the rarity of its origin. Weighing in at a hefty 263 carats, this opal showcases a breathtaking mix of red, orange, yellow, and green hues, evoking a fiery blaze.

What sets the Flame Queen apart is its mesmerizing pattern; the colors seem to dance across its surface, changing and flickering with the light. Mined from the opal-rich fields of Lightning Ridge, Australia, it is a prime example of a black opal, the rarest and most valuable kind, contributing to its jaw-dropping price.


  • The Olympic Australis Opal - $2.5 million

The Olympic Australis Opal is valued at a staggering $2.5 million, earning its place as one of the world's most expensive opals not just for its size but also for its astounding quality. This gemstone boasts an incredible purity and intensity of color, with a spectrum that includes vibrant blues, greens, and traces of red flaming across its face.

Mined in Coober Pedy, Australia, in 1956, it is one of the largest and most flawless opals ever discovered, weighing in at an impressive 17,000 carats. Its name derives from the Olympic Games, which were being held in Melbourne at the time of its discovery, symbolizing its excellence and unparalleled beauty.

The Olympic Australis stands out for its brilliant play of color, displaying all the hues of the rainbow with an extraordinary vibrancy that captivates all who see it. This opal's rarity, combined with its majestic display and historical significance, justifies its multimillion-dollar price tag, making it a treasured piece for collectors worldwide.


  • The Red Emperor Opal - $1.9 million

The Red Emperor Opal, valued at $1.9 million, is a gemstone of unparalleled magnificence and historical value. Its price stems from not just its sheer beauty, but also from its unique place in gemstone lore.

Discovered in the famed opal mining town of Lightning Ridge, Australia, it stands as a majestic example of fine quality and rare opal. The Red Emperor boasts a dramatic display of deep reds and oranges, colors that are highly prized and exceptionally rare in the opal world.

The scarcity of opals exhibiting such a vivid and captivating play of color adds to the Red Emperor's allure and its esteemed status in the market. It encapsulates the beauty and mystery of opals, making it a treasure worth its weight in both history and dollars.

  • The Halley's Comet Black Opal - $1.2 million

Halley's Comet Black Opal is named after the famed celestial event, mirroring its rarity and spectacular beauty with a valuation of $1.2 million. Its breathtaking array of colors, from fiery reds to deep ocean blues, makes it one of the most sought-after opals in existence.

Mined in Lightning Ridge, Australia, this gemstone is renowned for its vivid play-of-color and large size, characteristics that are exceedingly rare in black opals. The combination of its dramatic color spectrum, substantial size, and the mystical allure associated with its name contribute to its lofty price tag.

Collectors and gem enthusiasts covet Halley's Comet Black Opal not only for its aesthetic appeal but also for its symbolic representation of once-in-a-lifetime wonder and beauty. Its exceptional quality and the artistry required to sculpt it from the raw stone into a mesmerizing jewel justify its status as one of the most expensive opals globally.

  • The Virgin Rainbow Opal - $1 million

What makes the Virgin Rainbow truly remarkable is its exceptional play-of-color, displaying a spectrum that spans the entire rainbow, with a particular emphasis on fiery reds and ethereal greens. This opal's unique ability to refract light results in a mesmerizing display, akin to the phenomenon of a rainbow trapped within stone.

Mined from the opal fields of Coober Pedy in South Australia, renowned for producing some of the highest quality opals in the world, the Virgin Rainbow is a spectacular example of the region's gemological wealth. Its rarity, combined with the sheer intensity and variety of colors displayed, sets it apart as a pinnacle of natural beauty and a treasure coveted by collectors and enthusiasts around the globe.

  • The Aurora Australis Opal - $653,000

The Aurora Australis Opal is valued at an impressive $653,000, making it one of the most precious opals in existence. This stunning gemstone is renowned for its large size and the incredible spectrum of colors it displays, ranging from deep blues and greens to vibrant flashes of orange and red.

Unearthed in 1938 from Lightning Ridge, Australia, the Aurora Australis is notable for its rich, deep colors and brilliant pattern that resembles the Southern Lights, after which it is named. Its 180-carat weight and the striking harlequin pattern contribute significantly to its high value.

The opal's exceptional color play, rarity, and the historical significance of its discovery combine to make it an unparalleled gem amongst collectors and enthusiasts. Its remarkable beauty and the skilled craftsmanship required to reveal its spectacle justify the Aurora Australis Opal's nearing million-dollar price tag, marking it a masterpiece of natural art.

  • The Sea of Opal - $250,000

The Sea of Opal, valued at $250,000 in 2015, is a remarkable testament to nature's artistry, encapsulating the essence of the ocean's myriad hues within its depths. This is the recorded largest opal in the world with an extraordinary presentation of color, seamlessly transitioning between serene blues and vibrant greens, mimicking the ocean's surface.

Mined from the depths of South Australia's opal fields, this gemstone is a rare find, distinguished by its expansive color palette that captures both the calm and stormy aspects of the sea. Its rarity is further accentuated by the size and clarity of the gem, making it a coveted piece for collectors and enthusiasts worldwide.

The Sea of Opal's allure lies not just in its beauty but in its ability to evoke the mesmerizing qualities of the ocean, making it a unique and precious gem. This opal's high valuation is a testament to its unparalleled blend of natural wonder and gemological significance, firmly establishing it as a marvel among opals.

  • The Foxfire Opal - $50,000

The Foxfire Opal, valued at an astounding $50,000, stands as a luminary among gemstones for its unparalleled beauty and rarity. Its name, inspired by the mesmerizing phenomena of foxfire, hints at the opal's enchanting play-of-color, which mirrors the natural light emitted by certain fungi in woodlands.

The opal's value is further justified by its historical significance and the intrinsic beauty it holds, capturing the imagination of collectors and enthusiasts alike. The Foxfire Opal represents not just a remarkable natural phenomenon but a true masterpiece of the Earth's artistic prowess.

  • The Black Opals - $10,000 per carat

The Black Opals command a price of $10,000 per carat, standing as a testament to the extraordinary qualities that make black opals one of the most valuable gemstones. The majestic dark background serves as a canvas for a mesmerizing play of color, showcasing vibrant flashes of green and blue.

Mined in the opal-rich fields of Australia, these gemstones’ rarity is accentuated by their significant size and the intensity of their colors. The Black Opals’ price reflects not only their aesthetic appeal but also the scarcity of finding such a captivating example of nature's artistry in black opals.

Their allure lies in the depth and mystery of its colors, captivating collectors and enthusiasts worldwide. These opals represent the pinnacle of opal beauty, combining rarity, beauty, and a storied discovery that adds to their mystique and high valuation.

  • The Fire Opals - $10,000 per carat

The Fire Opal, previously introduced, is an extraordinary gemstone with a valuation of $10,000 per carat. These stunning opals are celebrated for their vibrant and diverse color display, featuring shades from deep yellow to intense reds.

The price is a reflection of their rarity and the exceptional quality of their play-of-color, characteristics that are highly prized in black opals. Mined from the renowned opal-producing region of Mexico, they are one of the most coveted opals kind by collectors and enthusiasts alike.

The combination of their significant size, breathtaking color array, and the mystique associated with their celestial namesake contribute to their hefty price tag. They encapsulate a rare interplay of beauty and mystery, standing as a pinnacle of opal gemology.

Some Uses Of Opals

As we all know, opals have long been revered for their beauty and symbolism, with cultures throughout history attributing various meanings and uses to these precious gemstones, whether they are the most expensive opals or the cheaper ones:

  • Jewelry: Opals have been used in jewelry throughout history, with some cultures believing that opals bring good luck and ward off evil spirits.
  • Decoration: Opals have also been used to decorate royal crowns, tiaras, and other items of high value.
  • Healing properties: In many cultures, opals have been believed to possess healing powers for ailments such as eye problems and depression. They are also thought to promote emotional balance and creativity.
  • Spiritual significance: Some cultures view opals as a representation of spiritual energy and enlightenment that can enhance one's intuition and connect one to higher levels of consciousness.
  • Collectibles: Due to their rarity and unique beauty, opals have become highly sought-after collectibles among enthusiasts and gemstone collectors. Rare and valuable opals can fetch staggering prices at auctions and private sales.


Overall, in the realm of precious gemstones, opals hold a unique position, offering a kaleidoscope of colors and patterns unmatched by other jewels. Among these, the title of "Most Expensive Opal" is a prestigious accolade, signifying not only the gem's inherent beauty and rarity but also its significance in both historical and contemporary contexts.

These opals, unearthed from the depths of Australia, serve as mesmerizing artifacts of nature's artistry, captivating collectors and enthusiasts worldwide. Their valuation reflects their unparalleled allure, making each piece a coveted treasure that embodies the pinnacle of opal gemology and the enduring fascination with Earth's natural wonders.