From Minecraft Wiki
First Appearance Classic 0.0.14a
Type of Block Solid block
Stackable Yes 64

Gravel is a type of Block typically found underground, in naturally-occurring pits, underwater, on beaches, or in the Nether. Like Sand and Red Sand, gravel will fall incessantly if there is no solid block underneath it. Therefore, it is possible to suffocate with the careless use of gravel. If the lowest block in a column of gravel is occupied by a partial block, like a Torch, the gravel block will disintegrate into a gravel resource instead. It is the second most abundant of the physics-obeying blocks, sand being the first.

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Gravel is a medium grey block with dark grey marks on it. Its previous texture had a pink/purple tint, but this was changed.

Uses[edit | edit source]

Gravel's abundance and gravity-obeying property make it useful for a variety of tasks, along with its gravity-obeying partner, sand. For exploration, it can be used to quickly build pillars to reach heights that are easy to dismantle after. They can also be used to quickly fill in Water or Lava lakes by dropping them on the edges or against overhead blocks so that they fall and occupy the fluids. Filling caves in with gravel is a quick way to prevent mobs from spawning. Mobs can be suffocated with gravel, too. This is an efficient way to raid a dungeon. If mined, gravel has a slight chance of dropping Flint. If using a Tool with the Fortune enchantment, however, there is anywhere from a 25% chance to a 100% chance a player will find flint, depending on the Fortune enchantment level.

Gravel is also commonly used for traps where pistons move down, allowing the gravel to move down as well, so something else such as water or lava will flow in where the gravel was, effectively making a bridge across a moat. This saves a player from having to use Slimeballs for Sticky Pistons. Another trap that gravel is useful for is setting a suffocation trap. This is where pistons would be triggered and retract sideways, allowing the gravel to fall on top of whoever was below. Another trap that uses a block update glitch in which the player will run on top of floating gravel or sand and then something will update one of the gravel or sand blocks and causes a chain reaction, and the player will fall or be killed by lava at the bottom.

Fletcher villagers can convert gravel to flint in exchange for an emerald.

Crafting[edit | edit source]

Coarse Dirt x4 Concrete Powder
(Shapeless recipe)
None None None Sand Gravel Sand
Dirt Gravel None Gravel Any kind of Dye Gravel
Gravel Dirt None Sand Gravel Sand

Mining[edit | edit source]

Gravel can be mined with any tool or by hand, but a shovel is the fastest.

Tool File:Shovelgraphic.png
Hardness 0.6
Breaking time[note 1]
  1. Times are for unenchanted tools in seconds.

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • In the Nether, it is possible to find massive cliffs made of naturally-floating gravel. Just like with sand, if any are destroyed, replaced, removed, or if a Ghast's fireball hits them, all of the adjacent floating blocks will collapse.
  • Back in beta versions, there were errors of gravel appearing everywhere (even in the Void, though it is extremely, extremely rare). These masses were called "gravel beaches," which can still be seen in the Overworld.
  • In caves (mainly ravines), there is another glitch called "floating gravel" in which gravel is floating in midair without any block under it. A simple hit can cause the gravel patches to fall. This can happen in Abandoned Mineshafts and Villages if a path goes over a hole.
  • Gravel was used as a pathway in NPC villages. Due to its gravity obeying nature, it can collapse into caves, leaving villagers trapped underground. This was fixed in version 1.8 which made cobblestone generate underneath the gravel pathways to prevent it from collapsing.
  • As a version exclusive, gravel that is capable of collapsing releases particles in Pocket Edition.
    • In update 1.12, gravel capable of collapsing will produce particles in the java edition.
  • The texture of gravel has changed multiple times, the pixel arrangements had differed for each change.
    • Gravel's texture was changed in Classic 0.0.15a (Multiplayer Test 1), 1.0.0 (Beta 1.9 pre-release 5), and 1.3.1 (Snapshot 12w21a).
  • If standing under naturally spawned unfallen gravel, players can see particles falling from it. This also occurs for sand.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Click for full Gravel gallery.