Lighthouses of South Korea: Sacheon

For most of its history Korea was an independent kingdom, or at least an autonomous kingdom under Chinese influence. This came to an end in 1910 when Japan annexed all of Korea. At the end of World War II in 1945 the 38° parallel was established as the dividing line between U.S. and Soviet zones of occupation, and in 1948 separate civil administrations were established in the two halves of the country. The Korean War (1950-53) ended in a draw with the armistice line falling close to the prewar 38° line. The Republic of Korea (ROK), commonly called South Korea, occupies the Korean peninsula south of the armistice line.

The name Korea, used internationally, is a Western version of Goryeo or Koryŏ (고려), the name of a kingdom that unified the country in the tenth century. From 1392 to 1897 the kingdom was known instead as Joseon or Chosŏn (조선). Today South Koreans usually call their country Hanguk (한국, literally "one country") and the official name of the Republic of Korea is Daehan Minguk (대한민국).

South Korea is divided into nine provinces and eight province-level cities. This page covers lighthouses of Sacheon City and Hadong County in the southwestern corner of Gyeongsangnam (South Gyeongsang) province on South Korea's south coast. Sacheon is a city on the mainland surrounding an inlet called Sacheon Bay. Hadong is the mainland county to the west of Sacheon; it has only a short coastline.

Navigational aids in the ROK are regulated by the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries (MOF). Most of the lights on this page are maintained by the Masan Regional Maritime Affairs and Port Office; lights of Hadong County, at the extreme southwestern end of Gyeongsangnam, are maintained by the Yeosu Regional Maritime Affairs and Port Office in neighboring Jeollanam (South Jeolla) province.

In 2000 South Korea adopted a Revised Romanization System to replace systems formerly used in the West. In the Revised System, the word for a lighthouse is deungdae (등대); dan (formerly tan) is a cape, seom (som) or do (to) is an island, am or amseog is a rock, man is a bay, and hang is a harbor. Some place names may be more familiar to Westerners in the spellings of older systems.

Special thanks to Kim Cheol Bong for permission to post copies of his photos.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. KR numbers, where available, are from the Korean light list. Admiralty numbers are from volume M of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
Online List of Lights - Korea
Photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas.
Navionics Charts
Navigation chart information for the Sacheon area.

Bamam Light
Bamam Light, Sacheon, June 2007
ex-Panoramio photo copyright kk4241; permission requested

Sacheon City Lighthouses

Sinsudo (Shinsudo) Lighthouses
Sinsudo is an island about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) long that lies in the approach to Sacheon harbor from the southeast. The island is about 1.5 km (1 mi) south of the Sacheon Shin Hang (New Port).
Chudo
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); three quick white flashes every 10 s. 9 m (30 ft) round concrete tower, painted black with one yellow horizontal band. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo, another photo is available (second pair of photos on the page), and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of a reef on the northeastern tip of Sinsudo, about 800 m (1.2 mi) south of the entrance to the Shin Hang. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2285; Admiralty M4320.45; NGA 16968.
* Sinsudo South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); red flash every 4 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical red concrete tower with gallery. An account of an elementary school field trip has several photos (halfway down the page); one is at right. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the south breakwater of Sinsudo. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2292; Admiralty M4321.12; NGA 16966.
* Sinsudo North Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); green flash every 4 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower with gallery. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo, an account of an elementary school field trip has several photos (halfway down the page) and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the north breakwater of Sinsudo. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2291; Admiralty M4321.08; NGA 16965.
Bamam (Pamam)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); two white flashes every 5 s. 15 m (49 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and double gallery, painted black with one red horizontal band. A closeup photo is at the top of this page, Kim Cheol Bong has a foggy photo and a more distant view, and Google has a satellite view. Located on a rock off the northwestern tip of Sinsudo and about 2 km (1.2 mi) south of the entrance to the harbor of Sacheon. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2296; Admiralty M4319.5; NGA 16978.
Sinsudo South Breakwater Light
Sinsudo South Breakwater Light, October 2009
Creative Commons photo posted by Sinsudo Elementary School

Samcheonpo Harbor Lighthouses
Samcheonpo is a busy harbor neighborhood east of the mouth of Sacheon Bay. It was an independent city until 1995 when it merged with the former Sacheon County to create Sacheon City.
* Sinhyang
2009 (?). Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); green flash every 4 s. 13 m (43 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Kim Cheol Bong's 2011 photo is at right, he also has a 2018 photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located on a short breakwater at Sinhyang southeast of Sacheon. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2278.3; Admiralty M4320.25.
Sinhyang Hang (Shin Hang) East Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); red flash every 5 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted red. Kim Cheol Bong has a very distant view along the pier and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the east breakwater of the Shin Hang (New Port) southeast of Sacheon. Site status unknown. KR-2278; Admiralty M4320.2; NGA 16986.
Mokseom (Hang Do)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); white flash every 4 s. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower with gallery. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo and Google has a satellite view. Located on the east end of an island on the west side of the Shin Hang. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4319; NGA 17000.
Mokseom West Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); red flash every 6 s. 9 m (30 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Entire lighthouse is red. Ahn Byung Ho has a photo, Kim Cheol Bong has a photo, Kang In-ho has a street view, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of a breakwater projecting from the west end of Mokseom. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2290.1; Admiralty M4319.2; NGA 16999.

Sinhyang Light, October 2011
ex-Panoramio photo copyright Kim Cheol Bong; used by permission
Sacheon (Samcheonpo Hang, Gu Hang) East Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); two red flashes every 6 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted red. Kim Cheol Bong's photo is at right and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the east breakwater of Sacheon's ferry harbor. Site status unknown. KR-2295; Admiralty M4320.4; NGA 16983.3.
Sacheon (Samcheonpo Hang, Gu Hang) West Breakwater South Head
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); two green flashes every 6 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower, painted white. Gil Min-cheol has a photo, another photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the detached west breakwater of Sacheon's ferry harbor. Site status unknown. KR-2295.4; Admiralty M4320.42; NGA 16983.
* Daebang Hang East Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); red flash every 4 s. 9 m (30 ft) round red concrete tower with gallery. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo and Google has a satellite view. Daebang Hang is a small boat harbor just east of the bridge connecting Sacheon to Changseondo. Located at the end of the east breakwater of Daebang Hang. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2296.8; Admiralty M4320.3; NGA 16981.
* Daebang Hang West Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); green flash every 4 s. 9 m (30 ft) round white concrete tower with gallery. Kim Cheol Bong has a closeup photo and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the west breakwater of Daebang Hang. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2296.9;Admiralty M4320.35; NGA 16981.5.
Daebang Sudo (Chinju Man) (2)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); red flash every 5 s. 15 m (49 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with double gallery, painted red. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo and Google has a satellite view. A photo is available (halfway down the page) that appears to show an earlier light at this location. Located on a rock at the western entrance to Sacheon harbor, about 1 km (0.6 mi) southeast of the Changseon-Samcheonpo Bridge connecting Sacheon to Changseon island in Namhae. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2297; Admiralty M4318; NGA 16976.
Sacheon East Breakwater Light
Sacheon East Breakwater Light, Sacheon, February 2012
ex-Panoramio photo copyright Kim Cheol Bong; used by permission

Gwangseo and Mojaseo Reef Lighthouses
These reefs are in the bay west of Sinsudo and south of the Samcheonpo docks.

Gwangseo
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); six quick white flashes followed by one long white flash every 15 s. 12 m (39 ft) round concrete tower, upper half painted black and lower half yellow. Kim Cheol Bong has a distant view and Google has a satellite view. Located on the north end of a reef about 1.2 km (3/4 mi) south of the Samcheonpo waterfront. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2294.1; Admiralty M4318.5; NGA 16977.
Neoreunyeo (Gwangseo South)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 10 m (33 ft); three quick white flashes every 10 s. Approx. 10 m (33 ft) round concrete tower upper half painted yellow and lower half black. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. Located on the south end of the Gwangseo reef. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2294.2; Admiralty M4318.45.
Mojaseo
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 10 m (33 ft); six quick white flashes followed by one long white flash every 15 s. Approx. 10 m (33 ft) round concrete tower painted black with one yellow horizontal band. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo and a distant view and Google has a fuzzy satellite view. Located on a reef about 2 km (1.25 mi) south of the Samcheonpo waterfront. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2294.9; Admiralty M4319.7.

Sacheon Bay Entrance Lighthouses
* Neukdo (Nuk To) Hang West Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 10 m (33 ft); red flash every 4 s. 11 m (36 ft) round concrete tower, painted red. A photo showing both breakwater lights is available and Google has a satellite view. Neukdo is one of two islands crossed by the Changseon-Samcheonpo Bridge. Located at the end of the west breakwater of the small boat harbor of Neukdo. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2294.8; Admiralty M4317.75.
* Neukdo (Nuk To) Hang East Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 10 m (33 ft); green flash every 4 s (?). 8 m (26 ft) round steel tower, painted white. A photo showing both breakwater lights is available, Lee Kyung Mi has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the east breakwater of the small boat harbor of Neukdo. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2294.7; Admiralty M4317.7: NGA 16975.
Changseon (Changson, Changso)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); green flash every 6 s. 17 m (56 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and double gallery. Entire lighthouse is green. The active light appears to be on top of the lantern. Kim Cheol Bong's photo is at right, another photo is available (a little more than 1/3 the way down the page), and Google has a satellite view. Located on a rock about 1.2 km (3/4 mi) northwest of the Changseon-Samcheonpo Bridge. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2298; Admiralty M4317.5; NGA 16974.
Jeodo (Jeo Do)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 18 m (59 ft); white flash every 6 s. 6 m (20 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is white. Kim Cheol Bong has a photo and Google has a satellite view. Located at the southern tip of Jeodo, and island on the north side of the entrance to Sacheon harbor, about 3.2 km (2 mi) northwest of the Changseon-Samcheonpo Bridge. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. KR-2299; Admiralty M4317; NGA 16972.

Seopo District Lighthouse
Hyanggido (Kokido, Koki To) (3?)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 26 m (85 ft); white flash every 5 s. 10 m (33 ft) round concrete tower, painted white. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. Located on a rock about 8 km (5 mi) west of Sacheon harbor. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. KR-2300; Admiralty M4315; NGA 17040.
Changseon Light
Changseon Light, Sacheon, January 2014
ex-Panoramio photo copyright Kim Cheol Bong; used by permission

Hadong County Lighthouses

Noryang Area Lighthouses
Noryang, also called Sinnoryang, is a small port on the mainland just west of the Namhae bridge.
Noryang South Breakwater
2019 (?). Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); red flash every 4 s. 11 m (36 ft) round concrete tower with two decorative ribs, painted red. Jongseo Lee has an August 2019 photo showing all three Noryang breakwater lighthouses and Google has a satellite view. The harbor has been rebuilt and expanded recently. Located at the west end of a detached breakwater on the east side of Noryang harbor. Accessible only by boat but easy to see from shore. Site open, tower closed. KR-2303.3; Admiralty M4312.8.
* Noryang East Breakwater
2007. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); yellow flash every 4 s. 11 m (36 ft) round concrete tower with two decorative ribs. Formerly red, this tower is now painted yellow. Han-Yoon Sik's 2007 photo at right of the original two breakwater lighthouses shows this lighthouse in red, Kim Cheol Bong has a 2014 closeup photo of the then-red lighthouse, Jongseo Lee has an August 2019 photo showing all three current Noryang breakwater lighthouses, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the east breakwater at Noryang. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2303.2; Admiralty M4312.6.
* Noryang West Breakwater
2007. Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); green flash every 4 s. 11 m (36 ft) round concrete tower with two decorative ribs, painted white. This is the white lighthouse in Han-Yoon Sik's photo at right of the two original breakwater lighthouses, Kim Cheol Bong has a closeup photo, and Bing has a satellite view. Located at the end of the west breakwater at Noryang. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. KR-2303.1; Admiralty M4312.5.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Noryang Breakwater Lights
Noryang East (foreground) and West Breakwater Lights, November 2007
ex-Panoramio photo copyright Han Yoon-Sik; used by permission

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: East: Goseong Bay | South: Namhae | West: Yeosu

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Posted December 4, 2007. Checked and revised December 30, 2022. Lighthouses: 24. Site copyright 2022 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.