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How to be a Treasure Hunter: A Treasure Seeker Guide

Updated on May 21, 2020
Rui Carreira profile image

Rui Carreira is an entertainment buff who writes about a myriad of different things... one of them being lists.

The Treasure Hunting Lifestyle: Metal Detectors, Research Papers or Simply the Will to Scout Up!

Treasure Hunting isn't easy, it requires a lot from an individual, and that's why every Treasure Hunter must be willing to commit to a way of life that will require:

  • Hours of Dedication;
  • Physical Work;
  • Research;
  • Legal Work (to get permits and so on);

Every kid's dream is to be a treasure hunter, to go on an adventure to try to find pirate booty, buried treasure, gems, jewels, gold, doubloons, and more!

So, having said that, there's a good reason why most never do anything like this, and that's because of all the challenges I outlined on the bullet points above.

Having said that...

There are a lot of people starting to tackle treasure hunting due to the rising popularity of TV Shows, movies, and other entertainment media which are focusing on this job. I'm talking about shows like The Curse of Oak Island, and many other programs in the History Channel and National Geographic.

Do you think you have what it takes to become one? Then read on!

How to Become a Treasure Hunter? What Kind of Treasure Hunter?

Becoming a Treasure Hunter is quite easy, becoming a profitable or successful Treasure Hunter is harder, and becoming a stellar and famous hunter is the hardest. So, summing up, profitability is achievable, but only a select few achieve stardom and fame for finding the best things.

Here is what you need to know and the rules you have to follow in order to become a Treasure Hunter:

  • Select a Discipline: Would you like to be a gold miner, a deep-sea plunderer, a metal detector scavenger? You decide;
  • Buy the Equipment Required: You have to get the proper tools in order to start, I will recommend some within this article.
  • Research: Treasures aren't lying around on every place, you need to research!
  • Do some fieldwork: This may be tiring, but it is where the fun lies;
  • Find Treasures: Rinse and Repeat.

As you can see, there's a lot to decide. There are some avenues that are easier than others.

For instance, combing a beach with a metal detector to find stuff like Gary Drayton, the ultimate detectorist, does is easier than being a deep-sea plundered for obvious reason.

To comb a beach with a metal detector you only need a metal detector and probably a pointer, while to plunder the deep seas you need all kinds of training and diving equipment.

Not only do you have to research on the treasure's location, but you also need to research on the equipment you need, and what kind of vaccines do you need to take in order to venture into other geographical locations with potential new animals, new poisons and new diseases.

You must always have antidotes at hand, and let's not forget that if you're exploring underground tunnels like Indiana Jones, you may as well research what kind of exotic animals live down there - it never hurts to be prepared.

On the other hand, check the paperwork of those that went in search of that particular work before, try to find out what they know, kind of like in the "Curse of Oak Island" treasure hunt.

This is it, so as you can see it isn't hard to follow your dreams, and if you're passionate enough I'm more than sure you'll succeed!

Treasure Hunting as a Job or as a Hobby:

Those who have enough passion for Treasure Hunting, being it whatever discipline they have committed to, will often find success and profitability.

The level of profitability, however, is what establishes the difference between those that keep treasure hunting as a hobby or get it to be their full-time job.

You know a lot of Treasure Hunters who become profitable and famous, think about those The Curse of Oak Island guys, Gary Drayton, the storage unit guys on TV or Pawn Shop owners that seem to occupy a lot of TV channels these days, or those deep divers searching for sunken chips with coffers full of Spanish Gold. These guys are an example of what you can strive to become.

People are very afraid of trying treasure hunting as a job, in fear that they may fail, and that's where the opportunity lies for courageous guys like yourself - the "padawan" treasure hunter reading this article.

With less competition comes success, and the fewer treasure hunters in your area the better, so if your country doesn't have a lot of treasure hunters combing about, then that's just an extra point towards your success on finding coins pretty easily.

What I mean is... if you have the passion for it, don't hesitate in making treasure hunting your dream job!

It can take a little bit to become profitable enough to get you the position of Treasure Hunter for a full-time, but it is easier than most people think.

If you watch the Curse of Oak Island then you already know coins are everywhere, and that's even truer in places where nobody is detecting as opposed to Oak Island where they scour the island for treasure for centuries.

Coin Combing and Collecting: Small Tokens of History


Popular Treasure Hunting Disciplines: From Metal Detectorists to Recreational Miners

There are a lot of treasure hunting disciplines out there, and some of the most popular are:

  • Metal Detectors: Scanning and Combing lands for riches;
  • Recreational Gold Mining: Mining and Small Scale Placer mining;
  • Deep-Sea Scavenging: Spanish Galleons are full of treasure;
  • Coin Collectors: Buying and Selling Collectibles for Profit, and keeping some;
  • Pawnshop Owners: They flip treasures for profit;
  • Storage Unit Investors: They hunt for treasures on abandoned storage units;

If you were surprised to see Pawn Shop Owners and Storage Unit Investors here, they are treasure hunters because it falls to them to spot treasures among the rubble. Pawnshop owners must be trained in recognizing a treasure when they see it, and storage unit investors must also be able to do this while having a keen eye for detail for the often little time they have available with the storage before bidding.

Recreational gold mining is much more common than you'd expect, and there are little operations running nearly everywhere in the world.

Lately, TV Shows about both big mining companies and recreational miners have surged and they raised awareness for this.

So, as you can see, there are a lot of different types of treasure hunters and you can become any of them with enough passion and the right equipment.

I keep mentioning the word passion because if you plan to enter this niche because of the profits you may get, you're going to have a bad time since profits come later.

How To Clean Dirty Coins? Restoring Coins to Their Former Glory

Coin Collecting: How to Clean Dirty Coins

This little video on the side shows you just how to clean dirty coins like a pro.

There are a lot of stratified formal conditions coin collectors classify coins with, and a coin in mint condition is worth way more than a damaged one. Always take care of your coin collection properly.

There are a lot of tips on the web on how to clean old coins in a way that doesn't damage them and restores their former glory.

Finding treasure isn't only about finding it, but often about selling it as well, and how good you can clean them and restore them determines the price you'll be able to get for any particular piece of treasure, being it a coin or the ark of the covenant.

Pro-Coin Computer Software Review: Getting The Treasure Hunting Tools You Need

This is one of the most used Professional Coin Collection management software pieces out there and with a good reason for it.

I use it for my personal coin collection and I can't use any other, since it fulfills all my needs, categorizing and keeping score of the value of my pieces. I can tag them as I wish.... sweet!

There are a lot of software pieces available to coin collectors.

  • Collector Software
  • Identification Software
  • Research Software

...and more!

Getting the right equipment is vital, but the right software can also help you. I advise you to get software like Pro-Coin if you're dealing with coins because you can get lost in your collection very quickly, and organizing your collection is half the fun.

These software pieces have fields for the coin's info, prices, photos, and more, so it's pretty useful to have.

Check it out!

Some Collectible Coins are Worth Millions:

This Lincoln Coin is valued at $35.000 though
This Lincoln Coin is valued at $35.000 though | Source

Answer, Treasure Hunter:

What kind of Treasure Hunter would you like to be?

See results

Severall Treasure Hunter Types:

There are several Treasure Hunter Types, and I will mention the core three:

The Passionate Type: The Example of Rick Lagina

The Passionate Type doesn't care about values, he just cares about the hunt, the gold, the coins, the riches, not by their value - but because they are a treasure.

The gold fever and the excitement of finding new things run through his veins and there isn't a thing he wouldn't do to practice his favorite hobby.

I'm thinking about Rick Lagina for instance, as he is an old post office worker who is fulfilling the dream of his life on The Curse of Oak Island thanks to his tycoon brother Marty Lagina who is financing the operation along with the profits of the documentary.

The Profit Hunter: National Geographic Gold Miners

He gets in just for the profit, he gets all the equipment required and labels it as an investment. He researches and gets on the field. When he finds out that he isn't going to see a quick dollar any time soon he forgets about the endeavor and moves forward to his next best thing.

I can think of many of the Treasure Hunters on Gold Digging shows, where they only care about profit and show little to no mind to anything else.

The Enthusiast Entrepreneur: Gary Drayton, the Ultimate Comber

The enthusiast is passionate but not as passionate as to forget about profit. He dedicates himself to his favorite niche and focuses on researching, studying, practicing, he doesn't care about the money and time spent, because he knows it is all going to pay out later.

He experiences the highest losses, but later he enjoys the highest profits. The type that will reach the highest TIERs of Treasure Hunting.

Gary Drayton started his career hunting for old bottles in Britain, but he has quickly progressed to become a beachcomber with a metal detector, even managing to find an emerald ring worth $350,000.

He now has a net worth well in the millions, so consider that.

Treasure Hunter Chart

Treasure Hunter Type
Legal Restrictions
Metal Detectors
Gold Miners
Deep Sea Treasure Hunters
Coin Collectors
Storeage and Pawn Shop Hunters

Treasure Hunting Summarized: Do You Have What It Takes to Hunt for Treasure?

Grab a pot and add the following ingredients:

  • Enthusiasm;
  • Passion;
  • Discipline;
  • Dreams;
  • Knowledge;
  • Practice;

If you have all these items, then you're primed to become a successful treasure hunter. If you still need to attain some of these skills or values, then work on them and you'll be much closer to fulfilling your treasure hunting goals.

Enjoy your future as a hunting treasure for profit.

The Bounty Hunting Profile:

If you have read this article up to this point and you think you have the bounty hunter profile - the thirst for treasure finding - then I would encourage you to start hunting... even if it is just by the sake of collecting.

Starting my treasure hunting life was one of the best experiences I had, and I still do it and get excited every time I add a new item to my collection - that's right I'm the passionate type, I don't sell what I find.

Are you ready to begin?

Treasure Hunting Rules: Do You Keep What You Find?

One of the things people have been asking me is if they can keep the treasure they find.

There are different rules according to what country you are at, but usually there are two main rules to follow.

The first one happens in most countries, and that is you have to give the treasure to the state while the state pays you the value of the treasure or a percentage of it.

The other happens in some other countries and states you can keep the treasure if you found it and it isn't reported as missing.

So, find out which of these two rules applies in your country or state and get to hunting.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Rui Carreira profile imageAUTHOR

      Rui Carreira 

      6 years ago from Torres Novas

      Thanks for stopping by! What kind of treasure hunter is he?

    • Diana Lee profile image

      Diana L Pierce 

      6 years ago from Potter County, Pa.

      My husband likes to treasure hunt. Voted up.


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