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How To Make a Nether Portal in Minecraft

Make your way to the next dimension!

The Nether is an integral realm of Minecraft, containing unique mobs, vegetation, structures, and rare treasures. In this guide, I'll show you how to make a Nether portal in Minecraft so that you can experience it for yourself!

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How to build a Nether Portal in Minecraft

When creating a Nether portal in Minecraft, you must first build the portal's obsidian frame. You can do this in a few ways:

  • Mine obsidian and make the frame from scratch.
  • Complete a ruined portal.
  • Use the lava bucket method.

I'll walk you through each of these methods and the required materials.

Build the Nether portal frame with mined obsidian

1. Craft a diamond pickaxe

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You'll first need a diamond pickaxe to build the frame from scratch. You'll need to venture deep underground to find and mine at least three diamonds, combining them with two sticks in a crafting table to create a diamond pickaxe. Fill the top row with the diamonds, then place one stick in the center box of the middle row and the other stick in the center box of the bottom row.

2. Craft a bucket

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Next, you'll want a bucket to carry water in. You can craft a bucket using three iron ingots. On a crafting table, place one iron ingot in the first box of the middle row and one in the third box of the middle row. Place the final ingot in the center box of the bottom row to craft the bucket! From there, you'll want to interact with a water source while holding it to fill the bucket with water.

3. Make obsidian

To make obsidian, you'll need to find a lake of lava (Image 1). These can spawn in the Overworld but can also be found more commonly between Y Level -50 and Y Level -60. Place the water on the edge of the lake so that it flows over, turning multiple lava source blocks into obsidian (Image 2). You'll need to gather a minimum of 10 obsidian to make the frame, but 14 obsidian is the ideal amount to collect.

4. Build a portal frame

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Let's get building! The frame is a rectangle four blocks long and five blocks tall, but you can skip the corner blocks to save obsidian if you only have ten blocks. Once you place the blocks per these instructions, your frame will be complete!

Related: Best Minecraft Nether Portal Ideas

Find obsidian and fix a ruined portal

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This method relies on luck and good spawns, as you'll need to come across a ruined portal frame to make it work. If you're lucky, the chest it contains will have enough obsidian to complete the portal. If not, there is a slight chance for a nearby village to have a blacksmith with a chest containing obsidian, but your best bet is to mine down and find the diamonds to make your obsidian.

Lava bucket method

If luck is not your ally, the next best thing would be to build the portal using the lava bucket method. While this method is easier to achieve than the previous one, it is more technically challenging, and you'll need a minimum of two buckets—one filled with water and the other with lava.

1. Pour lava and water from the buckets

Hold both buckets in your inventory slot. With the lava bucket in your hand, find the spot where you want to place your first obsidian block and interact with it to place the lava (Image 1). Afterward, quickly select the water bucket and put the water next to the lava (Image 2) to turn it into obsidian.

2. Place blocks around the portal frame

You will need to use a block like dirt to help place the water correctly, but you can build the entire portal this way (Image 1). However, this method is easiest if you need to fill in a few spots on a ruined portal but don't have any obsidian. Repeat these two steps to create a Nether portal frame (Image 2).

How to activate a Nether Portal in Minecraft

To activate a Nether portal, you need to light it with a source of fire. There are two main ways to do this. You can light the portal using two additional methods, but those rely on you having visited the Nether already.

1. Use flint and steel

You can craft flint and steel by combining one flint and one iron ingot in a crafting grid. Place the iron ingot down the middle and the flint anywhere in the grid (Image 1). All you have to do now is use the flint and steel on one of the obsidian inside the portal's frame (Image 2).

Related: All Minecraft Nether Biomes

2. Ignite a flammable block

This method took me a few tries, but it's worth a shot. Start by placing wood planks around the portal to hold in the lava, then place the lava on the portal itself (Image 1), and remove the lava as soon as the planks catch fire. You can also remove the plank on the obsidian to prevent the portal from activating prematurely. Keep placing more planks to keep the fire going, and the portal will activate (Image 2).

How to change portal locations in Minecraft

The Overworld and the Nether use the same coordinate system, but the Nether is 1/8 the size of the Overworld. One block in the Nether is equivalent to traveling eight blocks in the Overworld. This does not include the Y-axis, which is the same across dimensions. Building a portal in either dimension will place a corresponding portal in the other world.

You can move your portal around the Nether a bit and still have it connected to the same portal you entered through in the Overworld and vice versa. If you want to create separate portals to use as a Nether Highway, you need to maintain a certain distance. In the Nether, two portals must be at least 128 blocks from each other to prevent linking. In the Overworld, they must be 1,024 blocks away from each other.

Nether portal tips and tricks

Below are some extra tips for creating your Nether portal in Minecraft:

  1. If you need to light a Nether portal while in the Nether, you can deflect an attack from a ghast or blaze towards the portal to light it.
  2.  A Magma Charge is like a single-use flint and steel and can activate a Nether portal.
  3.  The largest a Nether portal frame can be is 23 blocks by 23.
  4.  A new portal is created in the Overworld if a Nether portal is torn down or otherwise deactivated and a player dies within the Nether.
  5.  After a player leaves the Nether, that dimension is no longer loaded. If you die in the Nether, you will have five minutes to find your items starting after you enter the Nether instead of five minutes from spawning.

How to make an end portal in Minecraft

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If you get bored of the Nether and want to explore the End, you'll have to roll up your sleeves. Unless you're playing Creative mode, there's no way to craft an end portal, meaning you'll have to learn how to find the end portal in Survival mode. End portals can be found in the stronghold, and you'll need to collect at least 12 eyes of the ender to activate its the blocks in the portal frame. It's tricky but worth it!

Inspired to see more of the Nether? Check out our Best Minecraft Nether Seeds and other Minecraft guides here on Pro Game Guides.


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Jovan Krstić
Since becoming a full-time Staff Writer in late 2023, Jovan has shared his diverse gaming prowess, spanning platformers, racers, real-time strategies, and sports games. His gaming journey began in the late 90s with PlayStation classics like Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon. As a jack-of-all-trades gamer, he refuses to be confined to any single genre. Currently, he enjoys slaying monsters in Vampire Survivors, causing culinary chaos in Overcooked! and paving his way to Division One in EA FC's Ultimate Team
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Contract Writer - Pro Gamer Guides. I work on Minecraft articles, particularly updating articles as the game changes and grows. I do play a lot of Minecraft, but I also enjoy games like Overwatch 2, Hades, and Splatoon 3 .

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How To Make a Nether Portal in Minecraft

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