The World's Greatest Lighthouses

Shooting their illuminating rays out over the water like shining fantasy towers perched on the rocky shores of our world, who doesn’t like a good lighthouse? Lonely, iconic, rugged, and stubbornly mysterious, lighthouses are the kind of inherently curious, no matter how well known they are. There are also so many lighthouses around the world, that it’s almost impossible for us to ever collect them all. So we want you to tell us about the greatest, unforgettable lighthouse you’ve ever encountered on your travels.

(Image: ANJCI/CC BY 2.0)

Personally, I’m partial to the Tourlitis lighthouse in Greece, an insane sailing beacon that’s perched on a thin spire of rock. It looks like erosion could topple it from its perch at any moment. There are countless more amazing lighthouses all around the world, which one if your favorite?

In the comments below, tell us about the most unforgettable lighthouses you’ve ever discovered. Tell us where they are, how you discovered them and why you find them so incredible. Your submission may be included in an upcoming round-up article on Atlas Obscura. Lighthouses have been shining a light on the world since their invention. Let’s return the favor.


holy cr*p, i loooooove lighthouses, and I’ve never see this one! that’s amazing.


Me too, I love lighthouses! This is pretty cool.

One lighthouse I would have loved to see was the Lighthouse of Alexandria before its destruction.

Image from this website


My favorite true lighthouse is probably the Rockland breakwater lighthouse.

Friends of Rockland Harbor Light


That’s lovely!

1 Like

I’m a big fan of lost and never-built architecture.

1 Like

Mu koh lanta national park: on the southern tip of the island of koh lanta in Thailand, has a lighthouse in a sensational setting. Either side of it are one rocky beach & a sandy beach. With a magnificent forest surrounding all of this.

1 Like

Fastnet lighthouse, the most southwesterly point of Ireland a fav since childhood, as I saw it blinking in the nighttime. Shipping forecasts use it to reference the region, amazing feat of granite construction at end of 1890s, manned until 1989. image


I’m a big fan of “Terrible Tilly.” The Tillamook Rock Lighthouse is on the coast of Oregon, USA.


What a great name for a lighthouse.


Three great lighthouses I have seen include the Kjeungskjaer and Landegode lighthouses in Norway. There are wonderful lighthouses all along the Norwegian coast. Also, the Peggy’s Cove lighthouse in Nova Scotia, Canada.


Klipsaare Lighthouse in the North of Estinian Saaremaa island. It is the target of an unforgettable 5 km walk:

Klipsaare Lighthouse on


All fabulous choices. But after many years of sailing on Chesapeake Bay, I would have to pick the Thomas Point Shoal lighthouse.


Wow! How does one get there? Zip line perhaps…

Phare de Sergipe in Brazil

Yeosu New Port in South Korea

Point Venus in Mahina, Tahiti

Portland Head Light in Maine

Lighthouse castle in Kiel-Holtenau, Germany

Sokcho in Gangwon-do province, South Korea

Kjeungskjær Lighthouse in Norway

Seahorse Lighthouse in Miri, Malaysia

St. Nicholas church and a lighthouse in Crimea

Tourlitis of Chora in Andros Island, Greece

Rostral Column Lighthouse in St. Petersburg, Russia

North Point Lighthouse on Lake Tahoe in Nevada

Lighthouse on Lake Constance in Germany



St. Augustine Lighthouse in Florida

St Catherine’s Lighthouse on the Isle Of Wight in England

Bird Rock Light Lighthouse on Crooked Island, Bahamas

The old lighthouse in Chania, Crete

Faro della Vittoria in Trieste, Italy (the most powerful light beam in the world)

Faro de la Marina, in Punta Coles, Peru

Palmer Island Light Station in New Bedford, Mass

Tower of Hercules (Farum Brigantium) in Galicia, Spain (oldest Roman lighthouse, 2nd c. CE)

Lindesnes Fyr Lighthouse in Norway

Lighthouse of Genoa (Lanterna), Italy (built in 1128!)

Korkyra Lighthouse in Croatia

Þrídrangaviti lighthouse in the Westman Islands, Iceland

Capo Spartivento Lighthouse in Sardinia

And you can rent it too!


Not one of the world’s greatest, perhaps, but the oldest lighthouse on the west coast of the United States:

Point Pinos Lighthouse, Pacific Grove, California


Here’s an old abandoned one that I think is beautiful. It’s on Lake Superior, just off of Munising, Michigan.



Used to live a couple of blocks from here; maybe not the world’s greatest, but awesome place to sit & clear your head.

When my son was in his angst years, he used to disappear regularly. I always knew where to find him, though.