Sidney-by-the-sea on Vancouver Island is home to Mineral World where one can admire and even purchase crystals, jewelry, fossils, unique giftware and so much more. Overlooking the sea in a beautiful glass-filled building is the perfect spot to view the wide array of semi-precious pieces of gemstones and jewelry.
When in Mineral World make a point of visiting their Interpretive Centre that is full of minerals, crystals, fossils, and rocks that offers an amazing experience for young and old alike. These displays provide a great opportunity to get hands-on and interact with the pieces being showcased. Get a better understanding of just what ‘density’ really means by trying to lift a standard Reserve Bank gold bar. Weighing in at 400 troy ounces, visitors are regularly amazed at just how heavy one gold bar is.
Try solving the puzzle of why some rock can actually float! Take a look at the two examples on display and try to figure out the reasons why some rocks float. If you are truly stumped, no problem, just check out the labels that will first challenge you and then explain how it works.
Mineral World is open 364 days a year. Admission to the Scratch Patch and the Interpretive Centre is free.
There is a small charge for some activities such as:
- Panning for gold will cost you $3.00/person and includes a small plastic vial
- Collecting shells and collecting gemstones – visitors can purchase a collector’s bag for $6.00, $8.00 or $10.00.
Hours of operation are:
- Monday – Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
- Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Mineral World is easy to get to and close to Victoria International Airport as well as to 3 ferries. Whether you are traveling by car, ferry, coming from the airport or using public transportation, visit Mineral World’s, ‘how to get there’ page for easy to follow directions and maps.
Some of the semi-precious gemstones one will find at the Centre include:
- Amber – the Baltic’s golden gem
- Rhodonite – an beautiful pink gemstone that can be found right on Vancouver Island
- Jade – British Columbia’s provincial gemstone
- Malachite – All the way from Africa’s dark center
The Centre also offers a fun and interactive learning experience for school groups. All school groups are led by highly trained staff to ensure each child has the best opportunity to have fun and learn all about the rocks and gems that make up our planet. The tours include both an introductory and an intermediate session.
Booking your child’s birthday party is yet another great way to have fun and learn about gems, fossils, rocks, and more. For the best birthday party experience, Mineral World recommends bookings for children between 6 and 12 years of age with a duration of 60 to 90 minutes. The cost is $10.00 per child (plus tax).
There are three components to parties:
- Story time
- Hunting for gemstones
- Being creative
There truly is something for everyone at Mineral World. From simply being amazed at the beauty of these gems and rocks, to purchasing unique pieces of jewelry, to learning obscure facts like why some rocks can float. With so much to see and do, Mineral World is one of those places that people find themselves coming back to time and again.