French tourist discovers 7.46-carat diamond in Arkansas park

A French national struck it rich when he unearthed a 7.46-carat diamond during a visit to Arkansas’ Crater of Diamonds State Park, making it the eighth-largest gem found at the park. This January, while on a leisurely trip across the United States, Julian Navas made the sparkling discovery that has since captured international attention.

The 42 year old from Paris, had initially planned to witness a rocket launch in Florida before heading to New Orleans to explore the vibrant Bourbon Street. However, his itinerary took a turn when he became intrigued by diamond prospecting while passing through Arkansas.

The state park, one of the only places in the world where the public can search for real diamonds in their original volcanic context, offered the perfect opportunity. After purchasing a ticket and renting basic diamond-hunting tools, Navas set out to the park’s 37.5-acre search area, eager to try his luck.

Navas recounts arriving at the park at about 9am and starting the laborious task of digging through the soil. By the afternoon, shifting his focus to the surface, he looked for anything that stood out. Despite the cold and wet weather turning the ground to mud, Navas persevered for hours, driven by the hope of finding a glinting treasure. His determination paid off when he unearthed a brownish, chocolate-coloured stone that turned out to be a sizable gem.

State park officials confirmed that the stone Navas found weighed 7.46 carats. His find on January 11 is the most significant since 2020 and ranks as the eighth-largest diamond in the park’s history since it opened in 1972. About the size of chewing gum, the gem brought immense joy to Navas. The first thing that came to his mind was to share the news with his wife. He affectionately named the gem Carine Diamond after his partner and plans to have it split into two separate diamonds, one for his wife and the other for his daughter.

This remarkable find underscores the allure of Arkansas’ Crater of Diamonds State Park, where dreams of unearthing hidden gems can become a reality for visitors from around the globe. For Navas, what began as a simple detour in his travel plans culminated in a life-changing discovery, linking his family’s name to a piece of the park’s storied history, reported KhaoSod.

World News

Nattapong Westwood

Nattapong Westwood is a Bangkok-born writer who is half Thai and half Aussie. He studied in an international school in Bangkok and then pursued journalism studies in Melbourne. Nattapong began his career as a freelance writer before joining Thaiger. His passion for news writing fuels his dedication to the craft, as he consistently strives to deliver engaging content to his audience.

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