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The Magic of Minerals

September 16, 2011

Southern Africa is often considered the gemstone treasure chest of the world as almost half of the Earth’s gemstones are found in this region. Here in Somerset West we are lucky to be in easy reach of the ‘Scratch Patches’ at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront and at Topstones in Simon’s Town, where you can enjoy hunting through hundreds of thousands of polished gemstones that literally cover the floor to find the ones you fancy.

The original and now world-famous Scratch Patch was started in Simon’s Town in 1970. The concept was so popular that it has since been copied in other parts of the world.  Topstones, the world’s largest gemstone tumbling factory where you can see how rough stone is polished, is also here.

There are a wide variety of tumble-polished gemstones in the Scratch Patch, including popular Southern African stones such as Tiger’s Eye, Rose Quartz, Amethyst, Jasper, Agates and Crystals. If you’re lucky, you might find virtually anything including Lapis Lazuli, Blue Lace Agate and some really exotic stones.

It’s an inexpensive visit and popular with all ages. You just purchase a small plastic bag or container ranging in price from R11 to R65 and then what stones you put in your bag or container is up to you.

Being surrounded by so many colourful stones is a memorable and uplifting experience. More and more people are starting to believe that gemstones have healing and other special powers and being surrounded by so many beautiful polished gemstones certainly does have a calming effect on many people, especially children.

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