Lighthouses of Western Latvia

Latvia faces west on the Baltic Sea and north on the Gulf of Rīga, an elliptical basin connected to the Baltic by the Irbe Strait. The western part of the country occupies a broad peninsula between the Gulf and the Baltic, an area that was included in the independent Duchy of Courland (Kurzeme in Latvian) during the 17th and 18th centuries. Rīga and the east coast of the Gulf were part of Swedish Livonia during the 17th century.

The Russian Empire annexed Swedish Livonia in 1710 and Courland in 1795. Latvia remained part of the Russian Empire until the end of World War I in 1918. After two decades of independence, it was incorporated into the Soviet Union from 1940 to 1990. The older Latvian lighthouses are from the Russian Imperial period, and some of the newer ones are of Soviet construction.

This page includes lighthouses of the Baltic coast and Irbe Strait; lighthouses of the Gulf of Rīga are described on the Eastern Latvia page.

Internationally, most locations on the coast of Latvia were known by their German names prior to World War I; these German names for the older lighthouses are shown in curly brackets {}.

The Latvian word for a lighthouse is bāka ("beacon"); the suffix -rags denotes a cape, and sala is an island. Lighthouses in Latvia are monitored and regulated by the Latvian Maritime Administration (Latvijas jūras administrācija) but are actually operated by the local port authorities in Liepāja, Ventspils and Rīga.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. UZ numbers are from the official Latvian light list, Ugunis un Zīmes. Light List numbers are from volume C of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 116.

General Sources
Lighthouse in Latvia
Information in English posted by the Latvian travel site Vietas.lv.
Online List of Lights - Latvia
Photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas. Most of the Latvian photos are by Klaus Kern or Rainer Arndt.
Ugunis un zīmes (List of Aids to Navigation)
The official Latvian light list is available in .pdf format.
Vikipēdija - Latvijas Bākas
From the Latvian edition of Wikipedia, articles (in Latvian) on the major lighthouses, some with photos.
Leuchttürme in Lettland
Photos by Andreas Köhler.
Lighthouses in Latvia
Photos by various photographers available from Wikimedia.
World of Lighthouses - Latvia
Photos by various photographers available from Lightphotos.net.
Port of Ventspils - Lighthouses
Information (in English) on three active lighthouses that are open for public tours.
Leuchttürme an der lettischen Küste
Photos of the major Latvian lighthouses taken in 2009 and posted by Bernd Claußen.
Latvian Lighthouses
Historic postcard images posted by Michel Forand.
Leuchttürme der ehemaligen deutschen Ostgebiete
Postcard views of historical German lighthouses on the Baltic coast, posted by Klaus Huelse.

Ovisi Light
Oviši Light, Ventspils, November 2008
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Alvals

West Coast (Baltic Sea) Lighthouses

Rucava Municipality Lighthouse
* Pape {Pappenze} (2)
1910 (station established 1890). Active; focal plane 26 m (85 ft); white light, 1.5 s on, 2 s off. 22 m (72 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower with central cylinder, lantern, and double gallery. Tower painted white, lantern and galleries red. The 1-story keeper's house appears to be in poor condition. Bronius Sriubas contributed the photo at right, Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, Trabas has Kern's photo, Quinn Solomon has posted a 2006 photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. This lighthouse is similar to many skeletal lighthouses in the U.S., but its design is unusual for northern Europe. The lighthouse is endangered by beach erosion, and concrete barriers have been placed in front of it to deflect the waves. The surrounding area of dunes and wetlands is recognized for its ecological importance and is a popular destination for birders. Located just off the beach about 20 km (13 mi) east of Rucava and 8 km (5 mi) north of the Lithuanian border. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS LAT-012; UZ-890; Admiralty C3386; NGA 12052.

Nīca Municipality Lighthouse
* Bernāti (Bernātu) (2)
1962 (station establishment date unknown). Active; focal plane 41 m (135 ft); white light, 2 s on, 2 s off. 21 m (69 ft) square cylindrical steel skeletal tower with lantern and gallery. Lantern painted red, and the upper half of the tower carries a slatted daymark also painted red. A 2008 photo is available, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Michel Forand has a postcard view of an odd beacon that marked this cape during the 1930s. Located on a headland near Bernāti, about 11 km (7 mi) south of Liepāja. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS LAT-003; UZ-885; Admiralty C3390; NGA 12056.

Liepāja City Lighthouses
Liepāja {Libau}
1868. Active; focal plane 32 m (105 ft); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 33 m (108 ft) round cast iron tower with lantern and gallery, painted with red and white horizontal bands. A photo is below, Trabas has Kern's photo, a fine 2008 photo is available, Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, Huelse has a historic postcard view, Michel Forand has a 1932 postcard photo, and Google has a satellite view. Liepāja is Latvia's principal port on the Baltic; before World War I it was an important base for the Russian Navy. The lighthouse was prefabricated in England by Chance Brothers. Damaged by German naval shelling during World War I, it was repaired in 1923-25. The original Fresnel lens was removed by Soviet troops early in World War II, but the lighthouse suffered no damage in that war. Located on the foot of the south breakwater in Liepāja. Site and tower closed. ARLHS LAT-008; UZ-700; Admiralty C3396; NGA 12060.

Pape Lighthouse
Pape Light, Rucava, summer 2007
photo copyright Bronius Sriubas; used by permission

Liepāja South Entrance Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 33 m (108 ft); white light, 1 s on, 1 s off, visible only on the range line. 30 m (98 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower. The tower has a rectangular slatted daymark, painted white with a black vertical stripe. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a pier across the river from the historic lighthouse. Site and tower closed. UZ-750; Admiralty C3397; NGA 12069.
Liepāja South Entrance Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 49 m (161 ft); white light, 1 s on, 1 s off, visible only on the range line. 40 m (131 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower painted red. The tower has a rectangular slatted daymark, painted white with a black vertical stripe. Google has a street view and a satellite view. Located on the waterfront 422 m (1/4 mi) east southeast of the front light. Site and tower closed. UZ-751; Admiralty C3397.1; NGA 12069.1.
Liepāja Middle Entrance Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (69 ft); white light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off. 20 m (66 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted white. The tower carries a large rectangular slatted daymark painted white with a black vertical stripe on the range line. Google has a street view and a satellite view. This range guides vessels through the middle entrance of Liepāja's breakwaters. Located offshore on the south side of the entrance to the Karostas Kanal, about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) north of the historic lighthouse. (The Karaostas Kanal is the modern inner harbor of Liepāja.) Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. UZ-720; Admiralty C3396.2; NGA 12064.
Karaostas Kanāla (Kara Osta) Range #3 Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); white light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off, visible only on the range line. 11 m (36 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower carrying a slatted daymark painted white with a black vertical stripe. No photo available, but Google has a street view and a satellite view. The front light of this outbound range is on a shorter skeletal tower. Located on the south side of the canal off Pulvera Street. Site and tower closed, but there should be a good view from the street. UZ-836; Admiralty C3396.351; NGA 12116.1.
Karaostas Kanāla (Kara Osta) Range #2 Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 16 m (52 ft); red light, 1 s on, 1 s off, visible only on the range line. 12 m (39 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower carrying a slatted daymark painted white with a red vertical stripe. Köhler has a photo and Google has a street view and a satellite view. The front light of this inbound range is on a shorter skeletal tower. Located on the south side of the canal off Pulvera Street, about 800 m (1/2 mi) west of the #3 rear light. Site open, tower closed. UZ-826; Admiralty C3396.331; NGA 12115.1.
Liepaja Light
Liepāja Light, Liepāja, January 2008
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Alvals
Karaosta Kanāla (Kara Osta) Range #1 Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (69 ft); green light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off, visible only on the range line. 15 m (49 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower carrying a slatted daymark painted white with a black vertical stripe. No photo available, but Google has a street view and a satellite view. The front light of this inbound range is on a shorter skeletal tower. Located on the north side of the canal off Turaidas Street. Site and tower closed, but there should be a good view from the street. UZ-816; Admiralty C3396.301; NGA 12114.1.
* Liepāja Middle Entrance Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 33 m (108 ft); white light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted red. The tower is supposed to carry a large rectangular slatted daymark painted red with a white vertical stripe, although no such daymark is seen in Köhler's photo or Google's street view. Google also has a satellite view. Located in a residential area on the north side of the Karostas Kanal, about 1 km (1.6 mi) east northeast of the front light. Site open, tower closed. UZ-721; Admiralty C3396.21; NGA 12068.

Pāvilosta Municipality Lighthouses
*** Akmeņrags (Stone Cape) {Steinort} (4)
1921 (station established 1879). Active; focal plane 38 m (125 ft); two white flashes, separated by 2.5 s, every 7.5 s. 38 m (125 ft) round stone tower with lantern and gallery. Entire lighthouse painted red. A photo is at right, Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, Trabas has Kern's photo, Jānis Dreimanis has a 2017 photo, and Google has a satellite view of the station and a street view from the beach. This station marks a prominent cape, where the trend of the Baltic coast changes from north toward the northeast. The original, temporary light was replaced by a 28 m (92 ft) wood tower in 1889. The present lighthouse replaced the 1911 stone tower, which was destroyed during World War I. Located on a cape about 35 km (22 mi) north of Liepāja. Site open, tower open Monday through Friday; there are photos taken inside. ARLHS LAT-002; UZ-680; Admiralty C3442; NGA 12120.
Pāvilosta Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); white flash every 3 s. 10 m (33 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower; the front of the tower carries a slatted daymark painted white with a black vertical stripe. Trabas has Erich Hartmann's photo, and Google has a satellite view. This is the entrance range for the small port of Pāvilosta. Located on the south side of the entrance at Pāvilosta. Site and tower closed. UZ-660; Admiralty C3443; NGA 12124.
Pāvilosta Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 18 m (59 ft); white flash every 3 s. 15 m (49 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower; the front of the tower carries a slatted daymark painted white with a black vertical stripe. Trabas has Werner Seiler's photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. Located on the south side of the entrance at Pāvilosta. Site and tower closed; the light can be seen from a distance. UZ-661; Admiralty C3443.1; NGA 12128.

Akmeņrags Light, Pāvilosta, January 2013
Latvian Wikipedia public domain photo by Biafra

Ventspils Municipality and City Lighthouses
*** Užava {Backofen} (3)
1925 (station established 1879). Active; focal plane 44 m (144 ft); white light, 1.5 s on, 2.5 s off, 1.5 s on, 4.5 s off. 19 m (62 ft) round cylindrical stone tower with lantern and gallery, mounted on an octagonal stone base and attached to a 1-story keeper's house. Buildings painted white. Ezra Nuakin's photo is at right, Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, Trabas has Kern's photo, Egita Deģe has a closeup 2017 photo, Huelse has posted a historic postcard view in which the tower is red with a single white band, Michel Forand has a 1937 postcard photo, Igors Jefimovs has a closeup street view, and Google has a satellite view. The original lighthouse was heavily damaged during World War I, with only the octagonal section surviving. A new tower was built on the original base, and a temporary light was used until this project was completed. Located on a headland about 24 km (15 mi) southwest of Ventspils. Site open, tower open Monday through Friday. ARLHS LAT-016; UZ-650; Admiralty C3448; NGA 12140.
* Ventspils {Windau} Loču Tornis (Pilot Tower)
1934. Inactive. 20 m (66 ft) white octagonal cylindrical tower with gallery but no lantern, attached to a small 1-story office building. The top of the tower appears to be an observation platform, and there is no evidence the tower ever had a lantern. The light was displayed at a focal plane of 13.5 m (44 ft), indicating that it was mounted on the outside of the tower somewhere below the gallery. S. Melkon has a fine 2007 photo, there's a closeup of this tower on the right of Kern's photo of the Ventspils Range Front Light, Huelse has an old postcard view showing the pilot tower amid dunes, Forand has a different postcard view, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. Köhler found the tower abandoned and in poor condition in 2018. Michel Forand has a historic postcard view of an earlier pilot tower. Located on the south side of the Venta River east of the foot of the south mole. Site open, tower closed. Owner/site manager: unknown.
Ventspils Ziemeļu (Vkhodoy) Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 28 m (92 ft); red light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off, synchronized with the rear light. 25 m (82 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower with gallery. Trabas has Kern's photo, Köhler has a photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. This is one of half a dozen tall range towers guiding vessels into Ventspils. Located on the south side of the Venta River east of the Pilot Tower. Site and tower closed but there are good views from nearby. UZ-520; Admiralty C3450; NGA 12148.
* Ventspils Ziemeļu (Vkhodoy) Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 45 m (148 ft); red light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off, synchronized with the front light. 35 m (115 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower with gallery. Trabas has Kern's photo, Köhler has a photo, and Google has a closeup street view and a satellite view. Located on Pētera Iera (street) 940 m (0.58 mi) southeast of the front light. Site open, tower closed. UZ-521; Admiralty C3450.1; NGA 12152.
Uzava Light
Užava Light, Ventspils, June 2004
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Ezra Nuakin
* Ventspils {Windau} South Mole (2)
1970 (station established 1870). Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); two green flashes every 3 s. 11 m (36 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Tower is white; lantern and gallery painted green. Sergey Melkonov's photo is at right, Trabas has Kern's photo, a closeup photo of the present lighthouse is available, Mindaugas Janusauskas has a distant street view, and Google has a satellite view. Huelse has a postcard view of the original lighthouse, which was probably lost during World War II. Ventspils is an important port at the mouth of the Venta River; the two curved moles protect the river entrance. Located at the end of the south mole; accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS LAT-033; UZ-597; Admiralty C3452; NGA 12160.
Ventspils {Windau} North Mole (2)
1970 (station established 1870). Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); two red flashes every 3 s. 11 m (36 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Tower is white; lantern and gallery painted red. Trabas has Kern's photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the north mole; the lack of closeup photos suggests this pier may not be open to the public. Site status unknown. ARLHS LAT-032; UZ-595; Admiralty C3451; NGA 12156.
Ventspils Rietumu (West) Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); red light, 4 s on, 2 s off, synchronized with the other two lights of the range. 15 m (49 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower; the front of the tower carries a slatted daymark painted black with a yellow vertical stripe. There is a small photo on p. 58 of the Latvian Light List, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. This range guides vessels approaching Ventspils from the Baltic. Located in a petroleum tank farm just north of the harbor of Ventspils. Site and tower closed. UZ-540; Admiralty C3450.5; NGA 12145.
Ventspils South Mole Light
Ventspils South Mole Light, Ventspils, June 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Sergey Melkonov
Ventspils Rietumu (West) Range Middle
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 28 m (92 ft); red light, 4 s on, 2 s off, synchronized with the other two lights of the range. 18 m (59 ft) square skeletal tower. There is a small photo on p. 58 of the Latvian Light List, and Google has a street view and an indistinct satellite view. Located on the slope behind the petroleum tank farm, about 400 m (1/4 mi) west of the front light. Site status unknown. ARLHS LAT-017; UZ-541; Admiralty C3450.51; NGA 12145.1.
Ventspils Rietumu (West) Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 40 m (131 ft); red light, 4 s on, 2 s off, synchronized with the other two lights of the range. 30 m (98 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower; the front of the tower carries a slatted daymark painted black with a yellow vertical stripe. There is a small photo on p. 58 of the Latvian Light List, and Google has a street view and an indistinct satellite view. Located on a hilltop about 900 m (0.57 mi) west of the front light. Site and tower closed. ARLHS LAT-018; UZ-542; Admiralty C3450.52; NGA 12145.2.
Būšnieki (Busnieku)
Date unknown. Inactive since 1997. 26 m (85 ft) square skeletal tower. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located in dense forest about 10 km (6 mi) northeast of Ventspils. Site status unknown. ARLHS LAT-020; ex-Admiralty C3469.

Irbe Strait (Irbes Šaurums) Lighthouses

Note: The Irbe Strait, the main passage connecting the Gulf of Rīga to the Baltic Sea, also forms part of the border between Latvia and Estonia. The strait is 27 km (17 mi) wide at its narrowest point, but it is relatively shallow. The dredged channel for large ships is close to the Latvian shore, so it falls under Latvia's administration.
Ventspils Municipality Lighthouses
*** Oviši (Ovišrags, Cape Ovisi) {Lyser Ort}
1814. Active; focal plane 38 m (125 ft); white light, 3 s on, 4.5 s off. 33 m (109 ft) round old-style stone tower with lantern and gallery. Entire structure painted white. Original 1-story wood keeper's house and a modern 2-story keeper's house. 1-story generator house now used as a museum; Fresnel lenses from this lighthouse, the Slītere lighthouse, and the Daugavgrīva lighthouse are displayed. A photo is at the top of this page, Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, Trabas has Kern's closeup photo, a good 2008 photo and a 2004 photo are available, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view and the street view from atop the tower. This historic lighthouse, the oldest active light in Latvia, marks the southern entrance to the Irbe Strait from the Baltic. The German name Lyser Ort is derived from the Swedish word lysa meaning "to shine." Located about 30 km (20 mi) northeast of Ventspils. Site open, museum and tower open Monday through Friday. ARLHS LAT-011; UZ-475; Admiralty C3470; NGA 12192.
Irbe (Irbe Strait)
1985. Active; focal plane 35 m (115 ft); white flash every 10 s. 37 m (125 ft) wave-swept round cylindrical concrete and steel tower with a large circular watch room and three galleries, surmounted by a helipad and mounted on a caisson. Watch room painted red, upper half of tower white with narrow red horizontal bands, lower part of tower black. A closeup photo is available. Construction required five years. Although this Soviet lighthouse is now in Latvian territorial waters, it is maintained by Estonia under an agreement between the two countries. The lighthouse was refurbished recently by the GT Corporation, a Russian company. Located in the strait about 20 km (12 mi) north of Ovisi. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Site manager: Estonian Maritime Administration. ARLHS LAT-023; UZ-480; Admiralty C3474; NGA 12194.
** Miķeļbāka (Miķeļtornis) {Pissen} (4)
1957 (station established 1885). Active; focal plane 59 m (194 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 56 m (184 ft) round cylindrical concrete block tower with lantern and double gallery, rising from a 2-story octagonal pyramidal base. Lighthouse painted white; lantern roof and gallery rail painted red. Keeper's house occupied by a resident caretaker. A photo is at right, Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, Trabas has Kern's photo, Aldis Putelis has a good 2003 closeup and a more distant view, the lighthouse appears on a Latvian postage stamp, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. This is the tallest lighthouse in Latvia, or indeed in any of the three Baltic republics. Huelse has a postcard view of the original lighthouse; it was patched up after being damaged in World War I but had to be demolished in 1932. Its replacement was destroyed during World War II and replaced in 1946 by a temporary wood tower. Located just off the coastal P124 highway about 12 km (7.5 mi) west of Lielirbe. Site open; it is reported that the caretaker will give tours of the tower. ARLHS LAT-010; UZ-470; Admiralty C3476; NGA 12196.

Miķeļbāka Light, Ventspils, May 2008
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Alvals
Sīkragciems
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 33 m (108 ft); white flash every 3 s. 27 m (89 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower. The top of the tower is partially enclosed by a slatted daymark, painted white. A photo by Bronius Sriubas is at right, there is another photo on p. 58 of the Latvian Light List, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located in a dune forest near Sīkrags, a village on the coast opposite Slītere. Site status unknown. ARLHS LAT-026; UZ-465; Admiralty C3477.3; NGA 12204.

Dundaga Municipality Lighthouses
**** Slītere
1849 (not lit until 1961). Inactive since 1999. 24 m (79 ft) round old-style stone tower with lantern and gallery, incorporating keeper's quarters. Entire structure painted red with white trim. A 3rd order (?) Fresnel lens from this lighthouse is on display at the Ovīši lighthouse museum (see above). A photo is below right, Kathleen Bennett has a closeup photo, Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, another good photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Very similar in design to Ovīši Light, both towers representing an old style Russian lighthouse plan. This tower, built originally as a daymark, is atop a high hill with a focal plane height of 82 m (269 ft). From the gallery one can sometimes see across the strait to the Sõrve lighthouse on the Estonian island of Saaremaa. The lighthouse is now incorporated in Slītere National Park and has been restored and open to the public since 2002. There is a museum in the tower with exhibits on Latvian lighthouses. Located about 10 km (6 mi) west southwest of Cape Kolka and 5.3 km (3.3 mi) from the coast. Site open; tower open daily except Mondays. Site manager: Slītere National Park. ARLHS LAT-015; ex-Admiralty C3477.

Sīkragsciems Light, Ventspils, July 2010
photo copyright Bronius Sriubas; used by permission
Saunagciems (Saunraga)
Date unknown. Inactive since 1997 but maintained as a daybeacon. 21 m (69 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower. The upper 2/3 of the tower is enclosed by a slatted daymark; the upper half of the daymark is red and the lower half is white. A photo and a small photo are available, there is another photo on p. 58 of the Latvian Light List, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located in Saunags, a village about 11 km (7 mi) west of Cape Kolka. Site status unknown. ARLHS LAT-014; UZ-460; ex-Admiralty C3477.5.
* Kolkasrags (Cape Kolka) (2)
Date unknown (between the World Wars) (station established 1818). Inactive as a lighthouse for many years. Approx. 15 m (49 ft) square cylindrical masonry signal station building, probably painted white originally. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Probably built as a watchtower sometime in the nineteen century, this building is listed as having a light in a 1945 French list. The building was heavily damaged during World War II but was rebuilt after the war by the Soviet military. It appears abandoned today. As mentioned in the following entry, two lighthouses were built on Kolkasrags (Cape Kolka) in 1818; these towers were still in service in 1879, according to Findlay's list, but they were discontinued soon thereafter. Michel Forand has a postcard view of one of these towers, showing severe damage from World War I; another postcard view shows one of the towers in use as a telegraph station early in the 20th century. It's possible that this tower was modified and survives as the lower portion of the Soviet station. Located near the point of Cape Kolka. Accessible by road; parking provided. Site open, tower closed.
Kolka {Domesnäs} (Domes Ness) (2)
1884 (station established 1875). Active; focal plane 20 m (66 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 21 m (69 ft) round cast iron tower with lantern and double gallery, all painted red; lantern dome is black. Keeper's house and other light station buildings enclosed by an octagonal seawall. Claußen has a page for the lighthouse, Trabas has Erich Hartmann's distant view, another distant view from the mainland is available, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. The lighthouse guides ships around the dangerous Kolkasrags (Cape Kolka), at the eastern entrance to the Irbe Strait from the Gulf of Rīga. A pair of range lights were built on the point of the cape in 1818 to guide ships around the offshore shoals. Thse proved inadequate, so a lightship station was established in 1858. A temporary lighthouse was lit offshore in 1875, well before completion of the permanent tower. The seawall protecting the station was replaced in 1976-78. Latvian Wikipedia has a photo of foundation ruins, presumably the remains of the 1875 lighthouse. Located on a small artificial island 6 km (3.75 mi) northeast of the cape. Accessible only by boat; there are distant views from the cape. Site and tower closed. ARLHS LAT-006; UZ-410; Admiralty C3478; NGA 12212.

Slītere Light, Dundaga, May 2007
Latvian Wikipedia public domain photo by Jānis U.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Southwestern Estonia | East: Eastern Latvia | South: Lithuania

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Posted April 25, 2005. Checked and revised April 26, 2018. Lighthouses: 31. Site copyright 2018 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.