7 Best Gravel for Betta Fish in the Tank

Betta fish are fun to have as a pet. Those attractive colors that shine as they swim around your fish tank gives you a relaxing feeling that can ward off stress. But, growing your betta fish not only lies in giving them proper food but also on how you can recreate their natural habitat too.

Betta fish thrives in shallow water that is surrounded by vegetation. And there’s no denying that recreating this kind of habitat is difficult. But by choosing the right gravel, you can provide a better home for them that’s similar to their natural environment. 

In this article, we will talk about the best gravel to put in your aquarium so your betta fish can live healthier, happier, and safer.

Without further ado, let’s dive in. 

What is the best gravel for betta fish?

Most fish owners overlook gravel when designing their aquarium. Maybe some of you that’s reading right now only pick gravel based on its price and color. If that’s the case, then that’s surely a recipe for disaster!

Gravel plays a vital role in your betta fishes’ aquarium. They help build good bacteria that can get rid of the waste accumulating in the fish tank. It also holds natural and artificial aquatic plants and keeps them in place.

Here are some of the best gravel or sand products for your betta fish tank.

Bulk aquarium gravel

Bulk aquarium gravel comes in large sizes and contains different types of rocks and pebbles. Bulk aquarium gravel helps you save more money because it’s already an all-in-one package.

For bulk aquarium gravel, we highly recommend the Carib Sea Peace River Gravel. This gravel is all-natural with no kinds of artificial coloring. It is also pH neutral so it won’t affect your water’s pH balance. 

Glofish aquarium gravel

If you want a little extra in making your betta fish tank stand out, then the GloFish Aquarium Gravel might be for you.

GloFish has unique gravel products that go perfectly with any aquarium type. It also comes with various color options, giving you the freedom to customize your betta fish tank based on your preferences.

Natural aquarium gravel

We recommend the Spectrastone Shallow Creek Regular Gravel if you want to get that ultimate natural look for your aquarium gravel. This gravel has a light color and can make your fish tank a definite head-turner.

It has a non-toxic coating that doesn’t affect your water’s pH levels, and its size is enough to hold down your aquatic decorations.

Black aquarium gravel

To give that ultimate natural look for your betta fish tank, say hello to Carib Sea Super Naturals Crystal River Sand. Aside from being natural, this gravel type also resembles black sand that shines really well. 

Having black aquarium gravel complements your betta fish’s attractive colors so they will stand out even more. This gravel also comes with living bacteria along with a water conditioner and purifier. Talk about giving you the best of both worlds for form and functionality! 

White aquarium gravel

For white aquarium gravel, we highly recommend Pure Water Pebbles Aquarium Gravel. This white gravel doesn’t contain any harmful materials that can be toxic to water.

It’s made from a premium material that can help anchor down decorative statues, rock formations, and live or artificial plants.

What color gravel is best for betta fish?

The best gravel color to put in your betta fish tank is darker ones, especially black, gray, or a mixture between the two. There’s nothing wrong with using colorful gravel, but doing so competes with your betta fish’s attractive colors.

So if you opted for brighter colors such as pink, red, or golden ones, your gravel will stand out instead of the betta fish’s themselves. Better yet, let your creativity do the talking by mixing bright and dark gravel colors until you get the right combination.

Related: What Color Gravel is Best for Betta Fish?

Is sand or gravel better for betta fish?

Best Gravel For Betta Fish In The Tank

The debate about whether to choose sand or gravel for your betta fish tank has been going on for years. Both have their pros and cons and it all depends on how you want your aquarium to look like and how long you can maintain it.

Sand is the ideal choice for some fish owners because it is easier to tuck plants compared to gravel. But, in choosing sand, make sure you bought it from a trusted fish store/pet shop.

You cannot just go to a construction site and get a bucketful of sand to use on your betta fish tank. Doing so is just a disaster waiting to happen because it is not healthy sand.

Buying sand from a trusted source gives you peace of mind and healthier habitat for your betta fish. But, sand is hard to maintain. Cleaning an aquarium with sand as a substrate can be a little challenging because it can easily stir up into the water and make it muckier.

And if you prefer live plants to decorate your fish tank, then sand is not for you. This is because live plants cannot thrive in the sand because of its dense nature, making it hard for live plants to grow and force their roots into. 

Gravel, on the other hand, is a viable choice if you want attractive looks and functionality combined into one. Gravel doesn’t clump together like sand, letting live plants to force their roots and thrive healthily.

Gravel is also heavier, making it easier to decorate not only live plants but also artificial ones because it stays into place due to its weight. The best part? Gravel is versatile as it comes in various sizes, colors, and styles.

So in customizability, gravel can give you so much more than what sand has to offer. 

Do betta fish need rocks in their tank?

Yes, they do. Betta fish thrives in shallow waters filled with vegetation and different kinds of rocks. That’s why gravel is the best choice for your betta fish tank. 

Gravel also helps promote the development of good bacteria which helps clean the fish tank’s water. Having a clean environment for your betta fish helps them grow and thrive healthily. 


With a plethora of gravel options in the market today, never pick one just because of its color and price range. Picking good gravel lies on where it came from, how it’s made, and how it helps your aquarium to look more attractive, safer, and cleaner for your betta fishes.

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