Welcome, coders and crafters! Today, we are going through all the Minecraft structures that you can find while exploring the blocky wilderness of Minecraft. We’ll also be going through the rarest ruins and how you can find them.
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Discover all Minecraft-generated structures
Overworld Minecraft structures
Firstly, we’ll go over the structures in the realm where you will likely spend the most time in: the Overworld! This will be where you originally spawn when entering a new world.
1. Woodland Mansion
This looming structure is the Illagers’ home base! Found in dark forests often thousands of blocks away from spawn, this building will spawn many powerful illagers, as well as an illager captain for those playing on Java Edition, making this one of the most dangerous places you can find in the game. However, those brave enough to face the dangers of the mansion may find a bunch of loot, perhaps even a Totem of Undying!
2. Mineshaft Structure
Mineshafts are underground, maze-like structures that twist and turn with new discoveries! You can find chests with loot and a lot of exposed coal, iron, and gold ore nearly everywhere you look. However, you should be on your guard if you’re exploring the depths, as you might run into hostile mobs, such as skeletons, zombies, and poison spiders!
3. Ocean Monument
Found in the depths of deep ocean biomes, the ocean monument are gigantic, underwater temples with a randomized layout. It will be swarming with guardians and elder guardians, so make sure you’re prepared for battle under the sea. If you make it to the center of the monument, you’ll find eight gold blocks and some wet sponges, which are great for soaking up water!
4. Ocean Ruins
Ocean ruins are considerably smaller than their monumental counterparts, made up of small stone brick and sandstone structures. You may find some drowned mobs here, as well as some chests with treasure.
5. Pillager Outpost
Pillager outposts are smaller than the mansions found in the deep forest, but they are also quite dangerous! They are made up of smaller structures, with the most notable being a tall watchtower with a chest of loot at the very top.
6. Stronghold Structure
If you are looking to reach The End of the game (both figuratively and literally), strongholds are what you will need to find! These underground labyrinths are crawling with secrets and loot, with libraries, jails, and an unactivated portal to The End. If you come with 12 eyes of ender, you can activate the portal and face the final boss: the Ender Dragon! You can also try your luck as there is roughly a one in a trillion chance that all slots of the portal will be filled, but I would not recommend attempting those odds.
Shipwrecks are abandoned vessels that are generally found underwater, although they are known to occasionally appear on land as well. They can be made up of a variety of different wood blocks, but when excavating these relics, make sure to check out the back half of the ship! There could be up to three chests to loot and plunder.
8. Desert Pyramids
Desert Pyramids are buildings made up of sandstone found in desert biomes. When you enter the pyramid and break a few blocks in the center, you’ll find a sandstone pit with four treasure chests at the bottom. Carefully make your way down there to claim the treasure, but make sure not to hit the pressure plate in the center! The results could be explosive!
9. Jungle Temples
Jungle temples are like an overgrown counterpart to the desert pyramids! They have two treasure chests: one is protected by a tripwire trap that can shoot arrows at you if you’re not careful, and the other is protected by a puzzle consisting of three levers that have to be pulled in a precise order. Here is a tutorial on how to complete the puzzle!
10. Village Structure
Villages are towns that dot the landscape of Minecraft’s overworld! They are made up of a variety of villagers, houses, and job sites, with some iron golems patrolling keeping the villagers safe. As you see villages pop up in different biomes, you’ll notice that the architecture of the buildings and the clothes of the villagers change! There are five types in total, specifically found in desert, plains, savanna, snow, and taiga biomes. See if you can find them all!
11. Swamp Hut
Swamp huts (aka “witch huts”) are smaller buildings made of wood, found in the midst of watery areas in the swamps. They’ll spawn witches and a black cat, and they can be used to make witch farms!
The Nether Structures in Minecraft
Once you’ve been able to build a Nether Portal, you can enter the Nether, a scorching domain of lava, fire, and sentient pig people! This is where you can find some large ruins to raid and plunder.
12. Bastion Remnant
Bastion remnants are large castles found in the Nether! They will generate four distinct areas: a large bridge with a carved-in piglin face, hoglin stables with some chests to loot, housing units with a nethar wart-infested courtyard, and a treasure room with blocks of gold! It is also the only place in the game to find the “Pigstep” music disc, so keep an eye out!
13. Nether Fortress
These looming nether brick structures contain blazes, wither skeletons, and zombified piglins, so be sure to watch your back when you’re here! If you’re looking for blaze powder to make eyes of ender, there should be at minimum one blaze spawner that drops blaze rods that can be made into blaze powder.
14. Nether Fossils
Fossils are composed of somewhere between 5 and 27 bone blocks, which can be broken down into bone meal! It’s a fun addition to think what types of creatures would have left these skeletons. Whatever they were, they sure were large!
The End Structures in Minecraft
Once you have found a stronghold in the Overworld, you will be able to enter The End, a land of darkness, large obsidian towers, flying dragons, and dangerous cities. Be careful when exploring here!
15. End City
These dreamlike towers are crawling with shulkers and (surprise, surprise) endermen, but also with unique items and loot! When slayed, shulkers can drop shulker shells, which can be used to make shulker boxes; these cool variations on the regular chest can store and teleport items, and they can also be broken down without actually releasing the items inside, leading to a lot more inventory space being available. If you stumble on a particularly large end city, you might find an “End Ship”, which will have the mythical elytra wings inside.
Explore the rarest Minecraft generated structures
Given that finding the strongholds is the only way to reach the final boss, it would be easy to assume that it takes some time to find one, and you would be right! There are only 128 of them in each Minecraft world, which may sound like a lot, but for context: a single Minecraft world has a surface area of over four billion square kilometers, which is more than eight times the size of Earth’s surface area! That will mean that there will be a LOT of space between one stronghold and the next.
However, you can use eyes of ender to locate the nearest stronghold to you! If you throw an eye of ender, it will move in the direction of a stronghold for a short moment, and then either fall or break. You can keep throwing them to orient yourself in the right direction until an eye flies straight up. At that point, you should be right on top of one; all you’ll have to do is dig down.
2. Woodland Mansions
Woodland Mansions are also incredibly rare finds! They only spawn in dark forest biomes and almost always thousands of blocks away from the initial spawning point. While you may stumble upon them randomly in your travels, it is highly unlikely that will be how you find one. Instead, the best way is to get maps from cartographer villagers! Here is a tutorial on how to get a map to a woodland mansion.
3. Ocean Monuments
Ocean monuments, while more common than woodland mansions and strongholds, are still a rare find! They only spawn in deep ocean biomes which can be hard to locate, and they tend to only have one monument per a 32 chunk x 32 chunk area. Getting a map from a cartographer to locate a nearby ocean monument is a great way to find one in your world!
Minecraft locate structures command
If you are looking to locate these structures a little faster than the in-game cartographers, luckily there is a command for that! The /locate command is perfect for finding the closest instance of whichever structure, biome, or person of interest you are looking for.
To run commands, make sure that you have cheats turned on; otherwise, you won’t be able to run the locate command, or any command for that matter! Once you have it turned on, go into the command line by pressing “t” on your keyboard. From there, type in “/locate” followed by the type of thing you are looking for, which can be the following:
- /locate structure
- /locate biome
- /locate poi
From there, type in the specific name for the thing you are looking for! For example, if you wanted to find the nearest ocean monument, you would type in /locate structure monument, and after a few moments, you will be given the coordinates of the nearest ocean monument!
Alternatively, if you are looking for the nearest dark forest biome, you would just type in /locate biome dark_forest, and then be given the coordinates! You can use this table to check what the right keyword is for the structure you are searching for.
Enjoy playing with Minecraft structures
Those are all of the structures that you can find in Minecraft! If you want to read more about Minecraft, explore the best custom Minecraft worlds. If you want to learn more about coding in Minecraft, check out our live online Minecraft Redstone Class designed for kids by professionals from Google, Stanford, and MIT, and led by an expert!
Written by Create & Learn instructor Jonah Zimmermann. Jonah has focused on creating and teaching computer science, coding, and STEM curricula for elementary and middle school students. In his free time, he enjoys video games and a good Dungeons and Dragons session with friends!