From Argentina to Singapore to Ireland, Musement shares ten of the world’s most famous lighthouses around the world worth a visit.
The Mediterranean, Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian… lighthouses overlook coastlines and lakes, but their purpose goes beyond adding a magnificent flair to landscapes. For centuries, lighthouse beams have both protected and guided seafarers and lakefareres alike from rocky, shallow water while serving as a navigational aid. In no particular order, here are ten of the world’s most incredible.
1. Tower of Hercules — Galicia, Spain
The Tower of Hercules is the world’s only remaining Roman lighthouse. Since the first century, it has been remodeled several times and its current neoclassical appearance dates from the 18th century. In 2008 it was united with the Statue of Liberty and in 2009, UNESCO declared the lighthouse a World Heritage Site.
Several legends have upped its intrigue, one of which says that Hercules arrived at the Galician coast near the current site of the tower and decided to bury the head of the giant Geryon after having defeated him in battle.
2. New Cape Point Lighthouse — Cape Town, South Africa
Located outside of Cape Town near the Cape of Good Hope, the Cape Point Lighthouse is perched on the rocky Cape Point promontory, and its 63-mile range renders it South Africa’s most powerful. Having opened in 919, this lighthouse replaced its predecessor at a lower altitude of 285 feet. The older one, at 860 feet, would often get masked by fog, which consequently led to the shipwreck of the Portuguese Lusitania liner in 1911.
3. Petit Minou Lighthouse — Plouzané, France
The landscapes along the road to this lighthouse located near Brest are quite exhilarating—you’ll definitely want to make several stops along the way for photos. Dating back to 1848, the 80-foot structure is exceptionally exquisite at dusk or dawn.
4. Fanad Lighthouse — Donegal, Ireland
This lighthouse is situated on a peninsula between Lough Swilly and Mulroy Bay in the north of Donegal County. This spectacular enclave on the North Sea is surrounded by the force of nature that is characteristic of the unmistakable Irish landscape. In fact, this lighthouse is a hotel so you can book a room there if you wish.
5. Lindau Lighthouse — Bavaria, Germany
Located in the port of the city of Lindon, which sits on a picturesque island on Lake Constance, the lighthouse constructed in 1856 stands beside an imposing statue of a Bavarian lion. Strolling the history-rich streets is the perfect prelude to the site of a beautiful two-toned lighthouse standing at the foot of the bay, which is made distinct by the clock on its facade.
6. Lighthouse of Chania — Crete, Greece
The 16th-century Chania lighthouse underwent some changes in the 19th century during the Turkish occupation that made it resemble a Minaret. However, the base of the lighthouse was remodeled in 2005 with respect to its original. Venetian architecture. Unfortunately, the lighthouse is not open to the public, but you can admire it from the outside.
7. Portland Head Light — Maine
Maine is dreamy for lighthouse lovers. The state is home to more than 60, all with postcard-perfect architecture. The oldest, the Portland Head Light, is located in Fort Williams Park, a protected area boasting exuberant nature and unruly ocean water.
8. Les Eclaireurs Lighthouse — Tierra del Fuego, Argentina
This red and white striped lighthouse is one of Ushuaia’s most emblematic landscapes. Located in one of the Beagle Channel islets, the structure was named after a late 19th-century French expedition and is open to visitors.
The lighthouse is often erroneously called the “lighthouse of the end of the world” in reference to the Jules Verne novel, although in reality, it the Lighthouse of San Juan de Salvamento had inspired the writer.
9. Raffles Lighthouse — Pulau Satumu, Singapore
Built during the 19th century on a rocky island called Pulau Samutu, this lighthouse is located at the southernmost point of Singapore. The islands form a protected enclave that is home to the largest concentration of underwater life in the country, including coral reefs. A perfect choice for those who love diving as well as great adventures.
10. Cape Otway Lightstation — Victoria, Australia
Mainland Australia’s oldest surviving (and most significant) lighthouse, the Cape Otway Lightstation was inaugurated in 1848. Nicknamed the “beacon of hope,” the structure overlooking the Bass Strait emitted the first beam of light that immigrants saw as the approached Australia after months on a ship.