Splash the cash: the world’s richest wishing wells, revealed

Have you ever tossed a coin into a wishing well or fountain and wondered where it ends up? A new study by VegasSlotsOnline.com, a leading igaming platform, has revealed the top spots globally where wishes turn into generous donations, with Rome’s Trevi Fountain leading the way.

  • Over $1 million (more than £850k) worth of coins are thrown into the Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy, each year
  • At the other end of the table are London’s Trafalgar Square fountains, from which just $1,500 (£1,200) of usable coins are collected by charity per annum
  • Italy is home to more generous wishing wells/fountains than any other country
  • Money thrown into wishing wells/fountains is collected and given to charities, helping to make wishes come true even if not for the original wishmaker
  • Wishing wells in the UK, USA, Japan and Panama also make it into the top ten

The study found that the Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy, collects more than €1 million annually. These coins are collected and donated to charity, making it the world’s richest wishing well.

Disneyland’s Snow White’s Wishing Well in California, USA, and the Magic Kingdom’s Cinderella Wishing Well in Florida, USA, also feature prominently on the list. While exact amounts are not disclosed, it’s known that Disneyland and Disney World together have seen amounts such as $18,000 in 2014 and $20,000 in another unspecified year donated to charity from coins collected in their parks’ fountains and water features.

The Luray Caverns Wishing Well in Virginia, USA, generates between $35,000 to $45,000 dollars a year. Since the tradition began in 1957, over $1.1 million has been collected and given away to charity.

In the UK, the fountains of Trafalgar Square are used for wish-making by some of the millions of tourists who visit, as well as those working and living in the area. Coins that are thrown into these fountains are collected by engineers during routine cleaning and maintenance and handed to the RSPCA charity. Unfortunately, only around £1,200 worth of coins are salvageable as a huge amount of coins are damaged and unable to be processed. As these fountains are a listed heritage feature of Trafalgar Square, the local authority does not encourage visitors to place coins or any other items in the fountain bowls.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Rome features heavily in the list, with the Piazza Navona Fountains and the fountain in front of the Pantheon, estimated to collect approximately €200,000 and €150,000 respectively each year.

The top 10 richest wishing wells are:

Rank Wishing Well Amount (rounded to nearest ‘000)
£ $
1 Trevi Fountain, Rome, Italy 858,000 1.1million 1 million
2 Piazza Navona Fountains, Rome, Italy 172,000 221,000 200,000
3 Pantheon Fountain, Rome, Italy 129,000 165,000 150,000
4 Kiyomasa’s Well, Meiji Jingu, Tokyo, Japan 98,000 126,000 114,000
5 Luray Caverns Wishing Well, Virginia, USA 27,000 – 35,000 35,000 – 45,000 32,000 – 41,000
6 Fountain in La Rotonda Square – Panama City, Panama 22,000 28,000 25,000
7 Disney Wishing Wells, California and Florida, USA 15,000 19,000 17,000
8 The ‘Mouth of Truth’ Fountain (Bocca della Verità) – Rome, Italy 15,000 19,000 17,000
9 Madame Pele’s Wishing Well at Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden – Hawaii, USA 12,000 16,000 15,000
10 Trafalgar Square Fountains, London, England 1,200 1,500 1,400

For the full list, and further info, visit https://www.vegasslotsonline.com/news/2023/09/04/making-a-splash-the-richest-wishing-wells-from-around-the-world/

Kayleigh Sacco, Editor in Chief at VegasSlotsOnline.com, commented on the findings:
“It’s fascinating to see how these small acts of hope and superstition can accumulate to make a significant difference for charities. Perhaps some people’s wishes have come true as a result, but even if they didn’t it’s clear that some real good has been achieved through these little rituals.”

Featured Photo by Allison Sheffieck on Unsplash

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