Top Crypto Projects in the Solana Ecosystem to Watch in 2024

Top Crypto Projects in the Solana Ecosystem to Watch in 2024

Solana's architecture and features make it an ideal platform for supporting the widespread adoption of Web3 technologies. Take a look at some of the best projects in the Solana ecosystem that have contributed to its growth and strong market performance.

Solana stands out in the crowded blockchain space with its unique combination of speed, efficiency, and scalability. Built to facilitate decentralized applications (dApps) and crypto-currencies, this Layer-1 blockchain employs a novel consensus mechanism known as Proof of History (PoH), which works alongside the established Proof of Stake (PoS) model. This innovative approach enables Solana to process thousands of transactions per second, significantly outpacing many of its competitors.


Google search volume for Solana | Source: Google Trends, TheBlock


Its scalability, low transaction costs, and high throughput capabilities address key challenges faced by blockchain technology, making it a preferred choice for developers and users alike. Here are some reasons why you should consider exploring the Solana ecosystem if you’re into web3 and dApps: 


Solana’s Market Performance and Ecosystem Growth in 2023 

The surge in Solana’s DeFi TVL in 2023 | Source: DefiLlama 


The Solana ecosystem expanded significantly in 2023, driven by developer activity, mainstream partnerships, memecoins like BONK, inscriptions like SOLS, DeFi TVL surge by over 750% since January 2023, and SOL token performance (up by 658% in the past year). Notable developments include:


  1. Community-led resurgence exemplified by Bonk's impact on the community and web3 world.

  2. Launch of Solana Mobile's Saga and migration of the Helium Network to Solana.

  3. Rise of new DeFi tools and projects and advancement of community-led validator infrastructure.

  4. Introduction of state compression to reduce network costs and AI integration with Solana blockchain.

  5. Partnerships with large enterprises like Mastercard and Visa.

  6. Solana Pay's integration with Shopify for fast, feeless web3 native payments.

  7. Support from Google Cloud and Amazon Web Services for Solana blockchain.

  8. Organization of real-life gatherings for ecosystem builders, users, and fans, with events like Breakpoint and the Solana Hacker House Tour.

  9. Debut of the Solana ecosystem creator community at Art Basel Miami Beach, showcasing the vibrant artistic community.

Top Solana Projects to Keep an Eye on 

Whether you’re a web3 user or investor interested in the Solana ecosystem, we’ve compiled a list of the best Solana-based projects across various categories for you to consider. Sign up, use them, or invest in their tokens, and immerse yourself in the Solana experience through the following dApps: 


1. Wallet: Phantom 


The Phantom Wallet is a preferred choice for Solana users due to its user-friendly interface, robust security, and seamless Solana blockchain integration. This self-custodial crypto wallet offers comprehensive features like staking, swapping, and accessing dApps. It also supports NFTs, allowing effortless management and trading. Its growth in 2023 is due to the expanding Solana ecosystem, rising interest in DeFi and NFTs, continuous wallet improvements, and strategic partnerships, including support for Bitcoin Ordinals.


Here are some other Solana wallets you can consider beyond Phantom: 


  1. Solflare: Solflare is known for its seamless integration with the Solana ecosystem, offering a user-friendly experience and robust support for staking, NFTs, and decentralized applications. Its web and mobile platform compatibility makes it highly accessible for users on various devices. 

  2. MathWallet: MathWallet stands out with its multi-chain support, allowing users to interact with not just Solana but also various other blockchains. This wallet is highly versatile, offering a range of features, including cross-chain token exchanges and a dApp store. 

  3. Atomic Wallet: Atomic Wallet is acclaimed for its security and anonymity, providing an all-in-one solution for cryptocurrency management without compromising user privacy. It supports a wide array of cryptocurrencies, including Solana, and offers features like atomic swaps and an in-built exchange service.

2. DeFi: Marinade Finance 


Marinade Finance (MNDE) is Solana's leading liquid staking protocol, known for its innovative SOL token staking. Users stake SOL tokens and receive mSOL, a liquid asset that earns staking rewards, simplifying staking and maintaining liquidity. Marinade Finance also promotes Solana's decentralization by delegating staked SOL to various validators, enhancing network security. In 2023, it introduced new features and integrations, expanding its utility and user base. Its TVL exceeds $1 billion, with a nearly 100% increase in the past month, over 107,000 users, and an 8.45% APY for SOL staking.


With a DeFi TVL of $1.36 billion as of December 2023, Solana offers plenty of DeFi platforms to consider beyond Marinade, including: 


  1. Jito: Jito is a Solana-based DeFi protocol recognized for its high-speed and efficient automated market maker (AMM) system, which significantly reduces transaction latency and improves trade execution times. Its innovative architecture optimizes liquidity provision and offers users a seamless trading experience with minimal slippage and maximized returns. Jito surged in popularity after the Jito Foundation announced a JTO airdrop of 100 million tokens to users who staked SOL on its platform. 

  2. Orca: Orca stands out for its user-friendly interface and intuitive swap functionality, making it one of the most accessible DeFi platforms on Solana for both new and experienced users. It offers unique features like Fair Price Indicator and Whirlpools, enhancing the efficiency and profitability of trading and liquidity provision. 

  3. Raydium: Raydium is a prominent AMM and liquidity provider on Solana, known for its integration with the Serum decentralized exchange (DEX), enabling lightning-fast trades and shared liquidity pools. Its dual role as an AMM and a yield farming platform allows users to engage in high-speed trading and earn rewards through staking and liquidity mining.

3. DEX: Jupiter 


Jupiter DEX on Solana has carved out a significant niche for itself in the crowded decentralized exchange (DEX) space, attributed to its efficiency, low transaction costs, and innovative features such as swap services, limit orders, dollar-cost averaging, and perpetual exchange capabilities. Leveraging Solana's high throughput and low latency, Jupiter DEX provides a fast and cost-effective trading environment. Its strategic use of airdrops, like the notable $WEN and the JUP token airdrops, has been key in driving user engagement and expanding its user base. The JUP airdrop, in particular, has garnered significant attention due to its potential impact on the platform's popularity and scale, further emphasizing Jupiter's commitment to rewarding its community and incentivizing participation. This approach, coupled with the platform's comprehensive trading features, contributed to Jupiter's trading volume surpassing Uniswap's in late January ahead of the WEN airdrop, showcasing the platform's growing prominence and adoption within the Solana ecosystem and the broader crypto market. 

4. Bridge: Wormhole 


Wormhole is a prominent cross-chain bridge in the Solana ecosystem, connecting multiple blockchains like Ethereum, BNB Chain, and Solana. It's popular for its robust interoperability, enabling easy and secure transfer of assets like cryptocurrencies and NFTs across different blockchains. In 2023, Wormhole launched the Wormhole Gateway to increase liquidity and improve security in the Cosmos ecosystem, implemented Automatic Relayers to simplify cross-chain dApp deployment, introduced the Wormhole Fellowship to support builders, integrated with Base, an Ethereum Layer 2 network, and powered various projects, showcasing its versatility.


5. Oracle: Pyth Network 


Pyth Network, a popular oracle on the Solana blockchain, is known for its high-fidelity data and real-time price feeds, which are crucial for DeFi applications. It leverages a decentralized network of data providers for accuracy and reliability, offering transparency and low latency updates. In 2023, Pyth expanded its data feeds, partnered with prominent financial and crypto entities, and conducted a PYTH airdrop event to boost network adoption and visibility in the Solana community.

6. Gaming: STEPN 


STEPN (GMT) has risen to prominence as the most popular game on the Solana blockchain thanks to its innovative blend of fitness, gaming, and earning - a concept commonly referred to as "move-to-earn." This unique model encourages users to engage in physical activities like walking, jogging, or running to earn in-game rewards, which can be in the form of GMT tokens or other digital assets. STEPN distinguishes itself from other blockchain games by seamlessly integrating physical activity with digital asset rewards, making it an appealing choice for both fitness enthusiasts and crypto users.


Whether you’re an avid gamer or a GameFi investor, here are some more Play-to-Earn (P2E) games on the Solana blockchain to explore: 


  1. Star Atlas: Star Atlas is a highly immersive, futuristic space exploration game built on the Solana blockchain, offering a grand, multiplayer experience with a deep economic system based on NFTs. Its cutting-edge graphics and deep strategy elements set it apart, allowing players to explore, conquer, and earn within a vast, richly detailed in-game universe.

  2. Walken: Walken is a unique 'move-to-earn' game on Solana that incentivizes players to stay active by converting their daily steps into in-game currency. It combines fitness with gaming, offering an engaging and healthy lifestyle choice where physical activity translates directly into digital rewards and progress in the game. 

  3. Defi Land: Defi Land is a gamified DeFi platform on Solana, transforming decentralized finance activities into interactive and enjoyable gaming experiences. It simplifies complex DeFi operations like yield farming and liquidity provision, presenting them in a playful, farm-themed interface that appeals to both crypto enthusiasts and casual gamers.

7. NFT Marketplace: Magic Eden 


Magic Eden has emerged as the leading NFT marketplace on the Solana blockchain, renowned for its extensive collection, user-friendly interface, and low transaction fees. Its popularity stems from the platform's commitment to providing a wide array of NFTs across various categories, catering to a diverse range of interests and price points. This inclusivity, combined with an intuitive and seamless user experience, makes Magic Eden an ideal destination for both seasoned NFT collectors and newcomers. The platform's low fees and fast transaction speeds, characteristic of the Solana network, further enhance its appeal, offering an efficient and cost-effective way for users to buy, sell, and trade NFTs.


Beyond Magic Eden, here are some more Solana-based NFT marketplaces you could explore for digital collectibles: 


  1. Solanart: Solanart is one of the pioneering NFT marketplaces on Solana, known for its wide selection of curated NFT collections and a streamlined, user-friendly interface. It stands out for its commitment to featuring high-quality, verified NFT projects, providing buyers with a trusted platform to explore and purchase digital art. 

  2. Honeyland: Honeyland is an innovative NFT marketplace on Solana that specializes in the sale and trade of digital art, with a unique focus on supporting and promoting emerging artists. The platform distinguishes itself with its artist-centric approach, offering tools and resources that help creators showcase their work and connect with potential buyers.

  3. SolSea: SolSea is a versatile NFT marketplace on Solana that offers a range of unique features, including the ability to mint NFTs with embedded licenses and the option for creators to add attributes and unlockable content to their NFTs. Its focus on creator rights and additional metadata options makes it a preferred choice for artists and collectors seeking more flexibility and customization in their NFT experience.

8. NFT Collections: Genopets 


Genopets, a popular NFT collection on Solana, is known as the first 'move-to-earn' NFT game that merges gaming with physical activity. Users progress in the game by nurturing and evolving their Genopet NFTs through daily physical activities. In 2023, Genopets introduced new features and gameplay mechanics, launched collaborations and partnerships, and expanded its ecosystem, enhancing user experience, increasing the value of Genopets NFTs, and emphasizing its commitment to innovation and community engagement.


Before you go, check out these popular NFT collections based on Solana:


  1. Okay Bears: Okay Bears is a vibrant and widely popular NFT collection on Solana, celebrated for its unique and visually appealing bear-themed artwork. The Okay Bears NFT brand and Zara have partnered to launch a collection of branded t-shirts. The collection is available on Zara's website and in more than 1,100 Zara stores across 74 countries. 

  2. Degenerate Ape Academy: Degenerate Ape Academy is a distinctive NFT collection on Solana featuring a series of uniquely designed ape characters with various traits and attributes. Known for its humorous and edgy style, this collection has garnered a dedicated following and is prized for its exclusivity and community perks. 

  3. Solana Punks: Solana Punks are a collection inspired by the iconic CryptoPunks, adapted for the Solana blockchain, offering a diverse range of punk-style digital avatars. These NFTs are not only sought after for their artistic value and rarity but also for the sense of identity and status they provide within the Solana NFT community.

9. Inscriptions: SOLS 


The SOLS token, operating under the SPL-20 Token Inscription Standard, marks a new era in the Solana network, offering rules for token creation and functioning. The SPL-20 standard, inspired by Bitcoin's BRC-20, allows for on-chain storage of digital art and other metadata, enhancing scalability, efficiency, and accessibility. SPL-20 inscriptions like "Lamp," "Pepe," and "URAN" represent a significant innovation in digital assets and NFTs, storing images or metadata directly on the blockchain, unlike traditional NFTs. The creation of a "Lamp" inscription involves uploading an image, setting transfer rules, minting it into an NFT, and inscribing it as an SPL-20 token.


10. DeSoc: Grape Protocol 


Grape Protocol on Solana is a pioneer in decentralized social networking, known for its innovative community building and management. It uses Solana to create, reward, and secure online communities, with membership tools linking social accounts to cryptographic keys, granting access and permissions based on wallet balances. In 2023, Grape introduced features like the Grape Access Guide, Multi-Coin configurations, and a community-driven DAO structure, supporting Solana projects' growth and adoption and integrating social platforms like Discord and Telegram, making it a standout in decentralized social applications on Solana.


In addition to Grape Protocol, here are some more SocialFi projects you can check out on Solana: 


  1. Access Protocol: This Solana-based platform is designed to redefine the interaction between content creators and their audience, offering a new approach to revenue generation. Access Protocol creates a new revenue stream for creators, allowing them to produce valuable content while enabling consumers to support their favorite creators and earn rewards. 

  2. Taki: Taki is a global social network on the Solana blockchain where users can earn social crypto tokens by participating in the community. It allows users to earn $TAKI tokens through engaging and creating content, and these tokens can be used to purchase custom coins representing the creators' value and influence within the Taki community. 

  3. Chingari: Chingari is recognized as a leading app for short videos on the Solana blockchain. Users of Chingari are rewarded with GARI tokens for their contributions, integrating content creation with a reward mechanism.

11. Memecoin: BONK 


Bonk (BONK), a prominent Solana-based memecoin, gained popularity due to its community-focused approach and listing on major exchanges like KuCoin. In 2023, Bonk witnessed a significant rally and undertook a token burn to stabilize its value. Its distribution via an airdrop to NFT enthusiasts and DeFi traders in the Solana ecosystem emphasized its community-centric ethos. Bonk's visibility was boosted by its involvement in the Solana Saga phone campaign, where a lucrative airdrop of BONK tokens increased phone sales, showcasing how crypto airdrops can boost interest in physical products.

12. DePIN: Helium 


Helium (HNT), a significant player in decentralized physical infrastructure networks (DePINs) on Solana, underwent a major migration in April 2023 to enhance scalability and efficiency. This move facilitated Helium's growth as the world's largest decentralized wireless network, supporting various applications, including IoT and mobile networks. In 2023, Helium was used in real-world applications like advanced tracking for logistics and supply chain management, showcasing its practical utility. The seamless migration process within the Helium app maintained a user-friendly experience amidst technical complexities.

Future Trends Expected in the Solana Ecosystem 

Known for its diverse projects in DeFi, NFTs, gaming, and cross-chain integration, Solana fosters a strong community through hackathons and developer conferences. Solana focuses on advancements like PoH consensus and new features to ensure a robust platform for future blockchain applications. Its growth is driven by market dynamics, investor sentiment, the rise of DeFi and dApps, strategic partnerships, and technological innovations like the proposed Token-22 standard. 


Looking ahead, Solana's roadmap includes further technological innovations and ecosystem expansion. The focus will be on achieving broader mainstream adoption, deeper community engagement, addressing environmental concerns, and navigating market dynamics. Enhancements in network reliability and resiliency are also key priorities, with network upgrades like QUIC, stake-weighted Quality of Service (QoS), local fee markets, and the introduction of the Firedancer validator client aimed at improving network performance and security.


These developments suggest a promising future for Solana as a high-performing, secure, user-friendly, and community-driven blockchain platform.



Solana is not just a blockchain platform but a vibrant hub of innovation and collaboration. The projects highlighted in this article, from groundbreaking DeFi platforms to pioneering NFT marketplaces and immersive gaming experiences, showcase the versatility and potential of the Solana blockchain. These projects are more than just applications on a blockchain; they are the vanguards of a new digital era, each contributing uniquely to the evolving landscape of decentralized technology.


The diversity and ingenuity of these projects underscore the strength of the Solana ecosystem. They illustrate not only the technical prowess of Solana but also its ability to foster a community of developers and users who are deeply invested in the future of blockchain and cryptocurrency. As the ecosystem continues to grow and evolve, keeping an eye on these projects will provide invaluable insights into the future directions of blockchain technology, decentralized finance, and digital art.


Further Reading 

  1. Top Solana Memecoins to Watch in 2024 

  2. Top 5 Decentralized Exchanges (DEXs) in the Solana Ecosystem

  3. The Best NFT Marketplaces on Solana

  4. Top Solana NFT Projects to Keep an Eye On

  5. How to Stake Solana with Phantom Wallet

  6. Top Decentralized Exchanges (DEXs) to Watch in 2024

  7. What Is Decentralized Finance (DeFi)?

  8. Top 8 IDO Launchpads to Explore in 2024