The 20 best Minecraft build ideas to inspire your next world

Minecraft best builds - an underground based made of wood planks with farming areas
(Image credit: Mojang, build by CubeU)

Picking out the best Minecraft build ideas to stoke the fires of your inspiration? Nobody has their Minecraft architecture projects Frank Lloyd Wright from the go, so we all need practice, experimentation, and our very own cubic muses. It's tough staring at masterful builds from the many Minecraft luminaries crafting up a storm, but with some help and the right frame of mind, you can get onto the build superhighway and let it take you from homages to the greats right on to grand designs all your own. Or perhaps you’re already Van Gogh-ing places with expert Minecraft skills on tap, and you just want to stock your inspiration cabinets? We’ve gathered up building tips and tutorials covering a variety of styles of Minecraft builds, to help keep your inspirational double chests overflowed to bursting.

If you've got a specific style in mind but need even more inspiration, try out our Minecraft house ideas, and more specifically some Minecraft cabin ideas. If you're going even grander, try out one of our Minecraft castle ideas or these majestic Minecraft mansions

Underground base

Minecraft builds - an underground base build by SheepGG

Bridged underground base by SheepGG (Image credit: Mojang/SheepGG)

Do you crave the depths like the dwarves of old? Do you want to repurpose your existing mine into something a bit more luxurious and a bit less dusty? An underground base is a classic Minecraft build, and with just a few touches you can whip up your very own modern style sunken base, or fantasy fortress.

Going underground is a great pick for someone looking for security, safety, and something stealthy. It’s easy to be covert when your build ideas start at sea level and go down from there—so don’t overlook them if you want to hide your hard earned resources away from prying eyes.

Underground base ideas

Tips for underground bases

  • Plan carefully, because every block of space your build occupies is twice the work, since you have to dig it out too.
  • Make sure to fill in or light up any pockets behind your walls that you leave behind so that mobs don't start spawning into them and surprising you during renovations—or just haunting you with creepy sounds.
  • Crops can be grown underground just fine as long as you have adequate light sources (9 or above), and in fact with artificial light like torches they’ll grow at night as well.
  • You can use glass blocks and shafts leading to the surface to give yourself natural lighting during the day, even deep underground.
  • If you’re trying to stay hidden in a multiplayer server, an underground base is the perfect choice for a hidden door or hidden staircase entrance using redstone.

Underwater base

Minecraft builds - an underwater coral reef base by Goldrobin

Underwater coral reef base by Goldrobin (Image credit: Mojang/Goldrobin)

Whether you’re still getting your sea legs or you’re practically a glow squid, building an underwater base can help you hide in plain sight just like an underground one, or you can leverage it to show off the ultimate in build opulence. From sprawling complexes and glass domes to cozy ocean cabins with the ultimate in aquariums, there are countless ways to block up your new hangout.

In contrast, actually building your new underwater base can be a whale of a task if you’re not forewarned and forearmed with knowledge. Get your build prepared and gather together your sponges—it’s time to dive into underwater bases.

Underwater base ideas

Tips for underwater bases

  • It’s a good idea to build a surface platform for storing your build resources—even if you plan to remove it before you’re done.
  • As of Java 1.20, you can utilize doors to breathe underwater: just place them on the seabed and then open the door and it will provide a 1x2 pocket of air you can swim into.
  • Make sure to take advantage of the properties of Soul Sand and Magma. Magma will pull you downward through the water, while Soul Sand creates columns of bubbles that propel you upwards (and restore your oxygen).
  • For exterior lighting, you can use glowstone blocks, sea lanterns, or jack o' lanterns depending on what look you prefer.
  • Sand and gravel are invaluable for clearing large underwater areas, as you can drop them from above to clear water out.

Minecraft update: What's new?
Minecraft seeds: Fresh new worlds
Minecraft texture packs: Pixelated
Minecraft skins: New looks
Minecraft mods:  Beyond vanilla


Minecraft builds - a lighthouse by Bluewheat

A cottagecore lighthouse by Bluewheat (Image credit: Mojang/Bluewheat)

While there aren’t any ships to ward off the rocks of your Minecraft beaches, lighthouses provide both an incredible aesthetic and a guiding beacon for those of us who tend to get lost in our own worlds. If you’ve ever made a dirt pole with torches on the top to help locate your home base from afar, you’ve already taken your first steps towards lighthouse construction mastery, so why not make a proper one with its own suite of details and maybe an attached living space?

Plus, if you leave space for it, a lighthouse makes an excellent launching point for future elytra-based travel, putting you a head above the trees and any other obstructions you might waywardly crash into.

Lighthouse ideas

Tips for lighthouses

  • Don’t feel beholden to the traditional lighthouse colors—you can easily swap red and white for other colors to better match your other builds, or just stand out from the crowd.
  • Be careful how you choose your light. If you have fire spread turned on, a gorgeous lighthouse with lit netherrack on top can quickly become an inferno.
  • If you’d like more of a medieval style, consider your build as more of a ‘signal fire’ a la the beacons of Gondor from Lord of the Rings. You can even use a series of these structures to mark the path to your base on a larger world.
  • If you want your lighthouse visible at a distance, make sure you take advantage of natural hills and cliffs—especially important if there are a lot of trees around.
  • There’s a ton of iconic lighthouses out there for inspiration, my personal favorite is the Point Betsie Lighthouse, but there are tons of examples from traditional to weird.


Minecraft builds - a dragon statue by Master Majesty

A dragon statue and fountain by Master Majesty (Image credit: Mojang/Master Majesty)

There’s no bigger flex than a monument that reaches to the sky, and the best statues make excellent centerpieces for your finest builds. Whether you want a giant version of your favorite Minecraft mob, a way to mark the path to your settlements, or just a trojan horse to hide your valuables inside—there’s nothing as stylish as a proper statue.

There’s a particular skill to building statues both tiny and enormous, so be sure to check out lots of examples to find the best fit for the space you have to work with. After all, a towering behemoth of a monument can overshadow the rest of your work just as much as an underwhelming little statue can look out of place next to the grandest Minecraft castle.

Statue ideas

Tips for statues

  • If you’re really looking to show off, you can just convert some of the blocks in your statue plans to expensive and flashy ones—like emerald or gold.
  • Don’t shy away from using color gradients. Things like andesite can be valuable to add texture for stone statues, just like deepslate can work with blackstone, and so on.
  • If you’re looking for more of a mural, you can convert images into 2D build plans using one of the many Minecraft image converters available online.
  • For more complicated builds, consider breaking down your build into layers, so you can avoid mistakes you only discover far later.
Philip Palmer

Phil is a contributor for PC Gamer, formerly of TechRadar Gaming. With four years of experience writing freelance for several publications, he's covered every genre imaginable. For 15 years he's done technical writing and IT documentation, and more recently traditional gaming content. He has a passion for the appeal of diversity, and the way different genres can be sandboxes for creativity and emergent storytelling. With thousands of hours in League of Legends, Overwatch, Minecraft, and countless survival, strategy, and RPG entries, he still finds time for offline hobbies in tabletop RPGs, wargaming, miniatures painting, and hockey.