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The Most Picturesque Lighthouses To Visit This Fall

The blaze of Summer will soon die down and Fall is peeking around the corner, no matter how much local temperatures try to defy this fact. What better way to celebrate our changing seasons than planning some fantastic Summer and Fall adventures? Visiting picturesque lighthouses is a perfect activity for the occasion. This week, ecbc explores some of the world's best lighthouse destinations.

Portland, ME

Portland Head Lighthouse MEMaine is the epitome of quintessential New England, boasting six lighthouses all within a half hour's drive of central Portland. Although many more beautiful lighthouses exist throughout the state, this route makes it possible to get a great lighthouse tour taking only an afternoon.

  • Two Lights State Park: As the name implies, two lighthouses can be viewed here. Both however, are located on private property, so although one can't get very close to them, the park offers great views of them.
  • Portland Head Light: This is one of the most photographed lighthouses in the country. Before leaving, check out Ram Island Light at the entrance to Portland Harbor.
  • Spring Point Ledge Light: Located next to the Portland Harbor Museum, visitors get the chance to learn more about Portland's rich history. Unlike other lighthouses, visitors can walk out on the granite breakwater to admire and photograph the lighthouse up close.


Photo: Portland Head Lighthouse 

West Coast Lighthouse Tour:

Pinos Point Lighthouse; Typical New England Style LighthousesWashington, Oregon and California have many lighthouses dotting the coast. While all offer beautiful views unique only to the U.S. Pacific Coast, Northern California offers its own special treat for the lighthouse enthusiast. Many of California's lighthouses were built shortly after the gold rush of 1849 and mirror the traditional New England style design in which the original lighthouses were built. Seeing this design, it's clear how these iconic cliff-side lights were given the name “lighthouse”, as it literally is a small house with a light tower constructed from the roof. Ironically however, this traditional “house style” lighthouse is non-existent in New England today. The only place this original style still survives is in Northern California.

Photo: Pinos Point Lighthouse; Typical New England Style Lighthouses


South Shore, Nova Scotia, Canada

Louisbourg Lighthouse, Louisbourg, Nova ScotiaNova Scotia's South Shore has lighthouses dotting the entire coast, including tranquil settings and louder wave-crashing bays. The “Lighthouse Route” along the shore offers views and stops at over 20 lighthouses, traveling along quiet country roads where lumber is still hauled by ox and where fishermen row wooden dories out to sea. This route makes an unforgettable trip.

Photo: Louisbourg Lighthouse, Louisbourg, Nova Scotia


Adriatic Sea, Croatia

Lighthouse of Palagruzza, CroatiaCroatia's claim to fame is its beautiful, serene cliff sides and breathtaking Dalmatian Coast. One more thing to make Croatia stand out as a must-see destination location are the architecturally beautiful, historically rich lighthouses along the Adriatic Coast. Many of these lighthouses are not only maintained, but can be rented out! Vacationers can enjoy a lighthouse all to themselves for often surprisingly reasonable nightly and weekly rates.  This comes complete with the tranquility of sitting on a remote island and a personal lighthouse keeper who can share the stories and legends living within the ancient walls of these unique and beautiful lighthouses.

 Photo: Lighthouse of Palagruzza, Croatia


*Note: For those not looking to travel quite as far as Croatia, opportunities to stay in a lighthouse exist all over the U.S..  Most are bed and breakfast situations and may not be quite as exotic as getting an entire lighthouse on a beautiful remote island to yourself!


So, soak in the last days that you can if the school year hasn't started up in your area and prepare for those cool crisp Fall nights. Begin planning how the modern traveler in YOU can step back in time and enjoy some of the great historical lighthouses in your own backyard or around the world!

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