The Lighthouse Directory

Welcome to the Lighthouse Directory, providing information and links for more than 23,900 of the world's lighthouses. Follow the Directory's Twitter feed for the latest in lighthouse news and Directory updates. Latest update November 26, 2022.

This week the pages for Jersey and Guernsey in the Channel Islands, Värmdö to Nynäshamn in Sweden, Djibouti, Somaliland, Somalia, Slovenia, Mexico Northwest Coast, Illinois in the U.S.A., the Cayman Islands, Jamaica, the Solomon Islands, Southern Ōita Prefecture in Japan, the Shípǔ Area of Zhèjiāng Province in China, Northern Papua Province in Indonesia, the Eastern White Sea in Russia, Changwon City in South Korea, and Bohol in the Philippines have been checked and revised with improved information and several new photos.

The Directory's pages for Ukraine describe the lighthouses as they existed before the start of the current conflict between Ukraine and Russia. No changes in the descriptions will be made until there is a stable agreement that stops the fighting. Russian-occupied territories in Ukraine, including Crimea, are identified provisionally as East Ukraine.

Also in the Directory: A Checklist of Lightships in the world. Included are some 127 ships surviving, restored, abandoned, or recently scrapped.

Special thanks this week to Michal Joka for comments on maritime terminology in Polish.

GOOGLE SITE SEARCH (of ibiblio.org) 

 


Grosse Pointe Light, Evanston, Illinois, U.S.A., October 2012
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Teemu008

A Month of Lighthouse News:

  • November 30. The National Park Service approves the plans for a major interior and exterior restoration of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in North Carolina, beginning next year. The plans include installing a replica first order lens.
  • November 29. The Harbor of Refuge Lighthouse at Lewes, Delaware, gets a new rotating LED light. The new lamp has the same range and needs only 3 (rather than 15) solar panels.
  • November 28. Preservation group breaks ground to build a replica fog bell tower at the Turkey Point Lighthouse in Elk Neck State Park, Maryland.
  • November 28. A temporary, less bright light is installed at the Chatham Lighthouse in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, while the U.S. Coast Guard Station gets a new generator.
  • November 27. The newly-formed Port Royal Lighthouse Association takes ownership of the deteriorated Schafner Point Lighthouse near Annapolis, Nova Scotia. Fundraising is underway and restoration is planned for 2023.
  • November 26. The Key West Lighthouse in Florida offers a Sunset Experience for groups up to 8, with wine and cheese plus the exclusive opportunity to view the sunset from atop the lighthouse.
  • November 25. Normally open May through October, the Southport Lighthouse and Museum in Kenosha, Wisconsin, sets special holiday openings tomorrow and December 10 and 17.
  • November 25. Repairs to the Port Alberni Lighthouse on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, will include replacement of shingles damaged by vandals.
  • November 24. The Montauk Lighthouse on Long Island, New York, will be illuminated for Christmas in a celebration Saturday afternoon, November 26.
  • November 23. The New London Maritime Society in Connecticut receives a grant of $100,000 for the Race Rock Lighthouse and a gift of $10,000 to finish the entrance gate at the New London Harbor Lighthouse.
  • November 22. A replica Fresnel lens is being installed at the Port Isabel Lighthouse in south Texas, and a lighting ceremony is scheduled for December 9.
  • November 22. In Maine the undersea power cable to the Goat Island Lighthouse station fails, although the lighthouse continues to operate on solar power.
  • November 20. The Tawas Point Lighthouse in Michigan will celebrate Christmas at the Lighthouse next Saturday afternoon, November 26.
  • November 19. In New Brunswick the J.T. Clark Family Foundation pledges $25,000 to match contributions made by December 15 to restore the Swallowtail Lighthouse on Grand Manan Island.
  • November 19. Discussion continues on how to restore the deteriorating and increasingly endangered Stepping Stones Lighthouse in Long Island Sound, New York.
  • November 18. In Washington the Mukilteo Lighthouse Festival receives a $60,000 grant from the city's lodging tax revenues.
  • November 16. The first order lens of the St. Catherine's Lighthouse in the Isle of Wight has been reassembled for display starting in March at the Classic Boat Museum in Cowes.
  • November 13. In England the Hull City Council awards a contract to construct a new berth at the Hull Marina for Lightship Spurn. The ship is nearing completion of a full restoration.
  • Nocember 11. In Florida workers installed a temporary support shaft for one of the four legs of the Sanibel Island Lighthouse, damaged by storm surge and wind from Hurricane Ian.
  • November 10. The Friends of Seacow Head Lighthouse in Prince Edward Island celebrate receiving ownership of the lighthouse from Fisheries and Oceans Canada.
  • November 9. The Cape Bear Lighthouse in Prince Edward Island will hold its annual Night for the Light fundraiser on Saturday, November 12.
  • November 7. Managers of the Dunkirk Lighthouse in western New York ask the city council to seek or find funds to control shoreline erosion next to the lighthouse.
  • November 7. The traditional rotating beam of the Flamborough Head Lighthouse in Yorkshire, England, has been replaced by a flashing LED optic.
  • November 4. Concerned volunteers start a foundation to address the erosion threat at the Cape Lookout Lighthouse in North Carolina.
  • November 3. At the Norah Head Lighthouse in New South Wales, Australia, the annual Lighthouse Festival will be on Saturday, November 12, and the 119th anniversary of the lighthouse will be celebrated Tuesday, November 15.
  • November 3. The season-opening Rendezvous at the Light celebration at the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse in Florida is set for Saturday, November 19.
  • November 3. In Connecticut the Stonington Historical Society kicks off a drive to raise $600,000 for the final phase of its $2.75 million renovation and expansion of the Old Lighthouse Museum.
  • October 31. A relighting ceremony marks the completion of the exterior restoration of the Barnegat Lighthouse in New Jersey. The lighthouse will reopen to visitors next spring.
  • October 31. The Piney Point Lighthouse and Museum in Maryland will now be open year round, except for Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.


Negril Point Light, Negril, Jamaica, February 2012
Google Maps photo by Bernd Zehring

About this site
Founded in 1999 (during the relocation of North Carolina's Cape Hatteras lighthouse), the Lighthouse Directory is a tool for research and study concerning lighthouses and efforts to preserve those lighthouses. The Directory provides a brief compilation of basic data for each lighthouse with links to other reliable information available on the Internet. Since the addition of the Hainan page in February 2009 listings cover the entire world. However, this doesn't mean the Directory is complete, because new information continues to come to light.

I'm glad to hear from site visitors, especially if you have lighthouse news or photos of rarely-visited lighthouses.

The Directory has over 30,000 links, and all of them were appropriate and legitimate when they were added. Occasionally, because a web site is hacked or a URL is captured, a link leads not to legitimate information but to an inappropriate site, such as a source of pornography or malicious software. Please let me know if this happens, and I will remove the offending link immediately.

This site is hosted by ibiblio.org, one of the largest free information databases online, maintained as a public service of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Honiara Harbour Light
Honiara Harbor Range Front Light, Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands
photo copyright Nawae Construction; used by permission

What is a lighthouse?
It is not so easy to define exactly what we mean by a lighthouse, and various organizations and individuals have used very different definitions when describing or classifying lighthouses. Clearly, all lighthouses are lighted aids to navigation, but not all lighted aids are considered to be lighthouses.

Some definitions are not controversial. An aid to navigation is a structure placed on or near navigable water to provide visual guidance to mariners. A beacon is an aid to navigation that is fixed in place (that is, not floating). A lighted beacon or lightbeacon is a beacon displaying a light, while an unlit beacon is called a daybeacon. Often, a lighted beacon is simply called a light.

Everyone agrees that a lighthouse is a lightbeacon that is, in some sense, a substantial building. Small lightbeacons such as masts, solid pillars, or small cabinets are usually not considered to be lighthouses. In this Directory, the guideline is that a lighthouse should have a height of at least 4 meters (13 ft) and a cross-section, at the base, of at least 4 square meters (43 sq ft). This simple guideline does not require that a lighthouse have any particular form or appearance. The structure of a lighthouse may be enclosed, partially enclosed, or completely open.

The Directory includes listings of certain lights and other sites of interest to lighthouse fans that aren't lighthouses by this definition. The titles of those listings are enclosed in square brackets [...]. In addition, lighthouses destroyed or demolished since 2000 continue to be listed; their names are preceded by the hashtag #.

A light station is a collection of buildings including a lighthouse, staff quarters, and supporting structures such as a fog signal building housing a foghorn or fogbell, a boathouse, an oil house to store fuel for the light, and so on. A century ago all lighthouses required lightkeepers to maintain and operate the light, fog signal, and other equipment. Today practically all aids to navigation operate automatically, but some light stations have resident caretakers, still called keepers, to maintain the property and guard against vandalism.


Mizunoko Shima Light, Bungo Strait, Ōita, Japan
Japanese Coast Guard Ōita Office photo

The lighthouse listings
Dates shown for lighthouses are the dates when the light was first displayed; this may be later than the construction date in some cases. A station establishment date, when listed, is the date when a light was first displayed at or near the same location. Data concerning the characteristics of lights comes mostly from the U.S. Coast Guard Light List for U.S. lighthouses and from the U.S. NGA List of Lights for lighthouses in other countries.

The focal plane height of a light is the height above the surface of the water at which the light is displayed. (The level of the water surface is usually "mean high water," the level at an average high tide.) In the listings, "focal plane" refers to the focal plane height. A lantern of a lighthouse is a room or structure that actually encloses the light.

The heights of the lighthouse towers themselves should be considered approximate. Different sources use different methods for measuring tower heights, and those heights may actually change due to changes in ground level at the base of the tower.

I have attempted to determine whether lighthouse sites and towers are open to the public. This information is inferred from whatever sources may be available; it is certainly not guaranteed. Please let me know if this information, or any information in the Directory, is incorrect.

Lighthouse listings are marked with ratings of zero to four stars based on the extent to which the light station is open to visitors. Check the ratings key to interpret these ratings.


Dōngmén Light, Shípǔ, Zhèjiāng, China, October 2014
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Siyuwj


Oinake Light, Jayapura Regency, Papua, Indonesia, November 2019
Google Maps photo by Suripto Tigalima

Articles about lighthouses:

Special Resources

Ostrov Morzhovets Light
Ostrov Morzhovets Lighthouse, White Sea Throat, Arkhangelsk Oblast, Russia
unattributed Polar Post photo

Songnaedo Light
Songnaedo Light, Masan, Changwon, South Korea, 2008
Masan Regional Office of Oceans and Fisheries photo


Old and new Balicasag Island Lights, Bohol, Philippines, April 2019
Google Maps photo by Lidao Li

La Corbière Light
La Corbière Light, St. Brélade, Jersey, July 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Em Baker

Landsorts Fyr
Landsort Light, Nynäshamn, Sweden, 2011
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Holger Ellgaard

Regional, state, and local lighthouse preservation organizations are recognized on each U.S. state page. U.S. organizations interested in lighthouse preservation nationally are:

  • The American Lighthouse Foundation, based in Rockland, Maine. ALF encourages preservation efforts throughout the country and holds preservation leases on more than a dozen New England lighthouses.
  • The United States Lighthouse Society, formerly based in San Francisco, has moved to the Point No Point Lighthouse in Hansville, Washington. USLHS has chapters active in the Chesapeake area, Long Island, Oregon, and Washington, and has been active in supporting preservation in other areas as well. The Society also publishes a respected journal, The Keeper's Log, and has a large collection of historic light lists of U.S. lighthouses.

Lighthouses on the Internet: A Researcher's Guide has replaced the list of links formerly on this page.

Ra's Bir Light
Ra's Bir Light, Obock, Djibouti, November 2011
photo copyright Jean-François Rodriguez-Nadal; used by permission

Piran Light
Piran (Rt Madona) Light, Piran, Slovenia, August 2009
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Mélisande*


Puerto Peñasco Light, Puerto Peñasco, Sonora, México, November 2020
Google Maps photo by Enrique Beltran

East End Light
East End Light, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, August 2011
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Marc Barrison


Point Robert Light, Sark, Guernsey, Channel Islands, July 2017
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Ruben Holthuijsen

Berbera Light
Berbera (Mayara) Light, Somaliland, January 2003
Flickr photo copyright Camelboyz; used by permission

Lighthouses of the Americas

Northeastern United States

Southeastern United States and U.S. Caribbean

Midwestern United States

Western United States and U.S. Pacific Territories

Atlantic Canada and St. Pierre

Interior and Western Canada

Bermuda and the West Indies

Mexico

Central America

South America, Antarctica, South Atlantic Ocean

Lighthouses of the Pacific and Indian Oceans, Australia, and Africa

New Zealand and Pacific Islands

Australia

Indian Ocean

Africa

Lighthouses of Europe

Britain and Ireland

France and Monaco

Spain and Portugal

Italy and Malta

Southeastern Europe

Southwestern Russia and Ukraine

Belgium and Netherlands

Germany

Inland Central Europe

Denmark, Faroes, Iceland, and Greenland

Norway (listed south to north)

Sweden (listed south to north)

Poland and the Baltic States

Finland

Northwestern Russia (listed southwest to northeast)

Lighthouses of Asia

Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea and Caspian Sea

Arabia, Iran and Pakistan

India

Southeast Asia

Philippines

Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and Timor Leste

China and Taiwan

Korea (listed clockwise around the peninsula)

Japan (listed clockwise around the main islands)

Asiatic Russia


Ra's Asir (Cape Guardafui) Light, Somalia, March 2013
ex-Panoramio photo copyright Oscar de Vogel; used by permission

Thanks to:

Hundreds of lighthouse fans around the world have enriched this site with their assistance, information, suggestions, and corrections. For a long time I tried to maintain a list of these many friends and contacts, but it has grown too long (and too out of date) to display here. However, I must recognize the late Michel Forand for his suggestions and corrections touching essentially every page of this work, and extend thanks to Jeremy D'Entremont, Ted Sarah, Klaus Huelse, and Andreas Köhler, who have followed the development of the Directory for years. More recently Jim Smith has read nearly every page carefully, correcting errors and suggesting useful additions. Each of them has contributed information and support in vital ways, and the Directory would be much less useful without their participation.

Formalities

Written by:

Russ Rowlett, Adjunct Professor of Mathematics and Retired Professor of Education
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

You are welcome to email the author (rowlett@email.unc.edu) with comments and suggestions.

All material in The Lighthouse Directory is copyright 2022 by Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Many images are presented by permission of their copyright holders, as noted under the image.

Permission is granted to copy portions of the Directory for personal use and study, but all other rights are reserved. You are welcome to make links to this page or to any page of the Directory, provided you credit the source and do not present the work as your own.

Please do not copy the contents of any page of the Directory to another site. This is an infringement of copyright, and it also deprives your users of the benefit of improvements and corrections made to the page. Everyone has permission to link to this page or to any page of the Directory.

The information contained in the directory is as accurate as I can make it; please notify me if you find any errors. Neither the author nor the University of North Carolina assumes any liability for uses made of the information presented by this web site.