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Minecraft Nether Portal Design Tips & Tricks

Most Minecraft players make simple nether portals like the one in the photo above. However, there are so many ways other ways you can design your portal. Nether portal designs can be so much larger than the standard 5×4 shape (up to 23×23 in any rectangular shape in fact) and it’s easy to decorate around them with blocks. Customizing your Minecraft nether portal is a fun way to make your base look cool!

Minecraft Nether Portal Rules

Nether portals have to follow these building rules:

  • The portal must be rectangular. If you want a different shape (like a circle), you must use multiple rectangular portals to make the shape.
  • The smallest Minecraft nether portal size is 5×4 blocks, and the maximum size is 23×23.
  • Only obsidian can be used to construct the nether portal frame.
  • Corners are not required on the nether portal frame, you can leave air or put any block you’d like in the corners.
  • Nether Portals are activated by using flint and steel to set a fire inside the frame. Nether portals can’t be activated in the End.

Large Minecraft Nether Portal Designs

Bigger Nether Portals usually need to be outdoors (unless you have a huge indoor space) due to their sheer size. These portals have a bit more flexibility with decorating and you can add things like a nice road leading up to the portal or some accents like statues or lava pools. A cool idea is to build with nether materials like lava, obsidian, and quartz.

Small Minecraft Nether Portal Designs

Smaller Nether Portals are usually needed for areas like caves, basements, and inside homes. Even though you are restricted with size, you can still have some cool decorations and a dedicated room for your portal. Some ideas are to include a bridge to your portal or create a room with nether decor like obsidian, fire, and lava.

READ MORE: 34 Cool Things to Build in Minecraft When You’re Bored

Nether Portal Placement

Next, you will need to decide where to build your nether portal. Here are some ideas:

  • Having a nether portal near your storage room can be convenient. This way, when you return from the nether you can drop off all your items in your chests.
  • Nether portals can be blended into the Minecraft environment in or around your base. For example, you can put a nether portal in a cave, the side of a mountain, in the forest, or even in hill of sand or snow.
  • A small Minecraft nether portal can be put in a decorated underground room, or a decorated building above ground as well. This can provide protection if any mobs go through your nether portals as they will be locked inside this room.
  • A large Minecraft nether portal will typically have to be somewhere outdoors, unless you have a building large enough to put it in. Don’t forget to decorate the area around it.

Examples of Locations

More Nether Portal Design Tips & Tricks

  • Nether portals in Minecraft need to be rectangular, but you can still place blocks in front of the portal to help change the shape.
  • Multiple nether portal frames can be placed next to each other to create different shapes.
  • Build around the obsidian frame using blocks that are nether-themed such as quartz, glowstone, netherrack, lava, fire, webs, obsidian, and nether brick. Personally, I like using quartz and glowstone to decorate my portals.
  • And last but not least, don’t forget to decorate the other side of the portal (in the nether) too! Be careful of making large portals in the nether though, as ghasts can fly through large nether portals into your base.


Tuesday 20th of March 2018

Thanks for the tip for these nether portal areas for designs, this will go great for my videos, I'll be sure to link this down in the Bio of my next video.