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Located   on the West Coast of Africa and  with  its  southern  border  neighbouring  South  Africa,  Namibia  is  one  of  the  world’s  largest  providers of Diamonds. But while these mines  are  very  mechanical,  many  of  its  coloured  gemstone mines are run on an artisanal basis.  One  noticeable  exception  is  the  Demantoid  Garnet  mine  in  the  Erongo  region,  which  is  reportedly  discovering  between  4000  to  5000  carats per month.

One thing to bear in mind with artisanal gem  mining is that mines will open and close as these  entrepreneurial  explorers  chase  new  finds  in  different regions. The mines of Neu Schwaben,  in the Karibib area of Namibia, yielded a large  quantity  of  blue  and  green Tourmaline  in  the  1950’s, virtually closed throughout the 90’s and  today have only a handful of miners working  through surface alluvial deposits, hoping that the  best finds are yet to come.

In the north of the country, a small quantity of  Spessartite Garnet with a vivid orange colour has  been found near the Kunene River and is being  mined by a handful of people. Namibia annually  also uncovers a small quantity of Aquamarine, Helidor and Tiger’s Eye.

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A Namibian Rose Quartz bracelet.