Best and Historic Maine Lighthouses, United States

Best and Historic Maine Lighthouses

Maine is mostly known for its maritime history, rocky coastline, and nature parks like Acadia National Park. But, another famous thing you should not miss is Maine Lighthouses. Its rocky coastline and the craggy weather make it one of the dangerous places in the United States for ships. Therefore, you can find 65 attractive lighthouses along the Maine coastline to make safe navigation to the shore.

Many of them have historical values that date back to the 19th century. But, now they contain all the modern features. Some of them are reachable and offer interesting museums while others can see only from a distance.

However, the most attractive Maine lighthouses are Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse, Wood Island Lighthouse, Portland Head Light, Cape Elizabeth Lighthouse, and Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse.

But, try to visit all the following best and historic Maine lighthouses on your visit.

Maine Lighthouses

1. Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse

Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse is an attractive lighthouse located in the famous Acadia National Park, Mount Desert Island’s southwest portion.

Constructed in 1858, it considers one of the oldest lighthouses in Maine. Therefore, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse Maine
Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse

Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse sits in a scenic location above the rocky coastline of Mount Desert Island. So, when you visit Acadia National Park, surely visit this historical lighthouse too.

Unfortunately, visitors are not allowed to visit inside it. But, you can tour around the property to explore surroundings.

There are some exciting walking trails on this property. So, you can capture the dramatic views of Acadia’s rocky coastline. Especially in the sunset.

You can easily reach the lighthouse by the park’s Island Explorer shuttle or your own vehicle. Then, just walk only for a half-mile.

Address: Bass Harbor, ME 04653, United States  Phone: +1 207-244-9753

Maine Lighthouses

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2. Maine Lighthouses: Wood Island Lighthouse

Located on the southern coast of Maine, Wood Island Lighthouse is an active lighthouse constructed in 1808. But now it is renovated and contains all the modern features like fully automated equipment and LED lights.

Sitting on the eastern edge of Wood Island in Saco Bay (at the end of the Saco River), it is a 47-foot conical white tower. It is made of granite rubble. And its architectural design was made by the United States Army Corps of Engineers.

Maine Lighthouses Wood Island Lighthouse
Wood Island Lighthouse

Wood Island Lighthouse is only accessible by boats. And, it is nicely visible from the Biddeford Pool too. Also, you may find the staff quarters near the lighthouse.

Being one of the National Register of Historic Places, Wood Island Lighthouse is an attractive place to visit in Maine. Anyone above 12 years can climb this lighthouse to view the magnificent views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Do not forget to reserve your tour via calling or their website.

Address: Wood Island Acres, Biddeford, ME 04005, USA  Phone: (207) 200-4552

Maine Lighthouses

3. Maine Lighthouses: Portland Head Light 

Constructed in 1787, Portland Head Light (with a 24m height) is the oldest lighthouse in Maine. Although it was automated in 1989, you can still see its historical features and looks.

Sitting at the entrance of the Portland Harbor in the Gulf of Maine, Portland Head Light is one top tourist attractions in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.

Maine Lighthouses Portland Head Light 
Portland Head Light

The US Coast Guard manages the light station, and they have converted the former lighthouse keepers’ house into an interesting maritime museum. So, visitors can collect more historical stories from there.

And also, they can view scenic views of the lighthouse, harbor, and the ocean while having fun at picnic areas.

On the other hand, you get the opportunity to hike the nature trails in Fort Williams Park near the Portland Head Light.

Address: 12 Captain Strout Cir, Cape Elizabeth, ME 04107, United States  Phone: +1 207-799-2661 

Maine Lighthouses

4. Maine Lighthouses: Two Lights Lighthouse, Cape Elizabeth

Two Lights Lighthouse or Cape Elizabeth Light is also a historical lighthouse that opened in 1828. According to its name, there are two lights called the eastern tower and the western tower. Now, only the eastern tower is working, and the western tower is deactivated.

Located at the southwestern entrance to Casco Bay in the Two Lights State Park, the Two Lights Lighthouse is the first twin lighthouse in Maine. It is made with stone and cast iron by following the Gothic Revival architectural style.

Two Lights Lighthouse, Cape Elizabeth
Two Lights Lighthouse

Before establishing Two Lights Lighthouse, around 100 ships have been sunk near this coastline between 1780 and 1990. So, this lighthouse may have saved so many ships in history. That’s why it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.

When you visit there, you can get scenic views of Casco Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. The picnic tables and hiking trails near the lighthouse will help you to capture the best views.

But unfortunately, these lighthouses are not open to the public. Especially, the western tower is currently a privately owned one.

Maine Maritime Museum has the exact replica of the Two Lights lantern room with the original second-order Fresnel lens. So, just drive for about 45 miles north and visit Maine Maritime Museum in Bath Town, Maine.

Address: 15 2 Lights Terrace, Cape Elizabeth, ME 04107, United States  Phone: +1 207-799-5871

Maine Lighthouses

5. Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse

Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse a sparkplug lighthouse built-in 1897.

Located in South Portland, Maine, this lighthouse marks a dangerous obstacle on the west side of the main shipping channel into Portland Harbor. Actually, it was constructed after many complaints from many shipowners that their ships were damaged due to the invisibility of the ledge.

Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse Maine
Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse

Then, in 1951 Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse was connected to the land with a long breakwater made with granite boulders (900 foot long). Now, the breakwater is helpful for the visitors to fish, picnic, and get incredible views of the lighthouse and the Atlantic Ocean.

By considering all the historical facts, Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

So, when you visit Fort Preble, surely visit the nearby Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse.

Address: 2 Fort Rd, South Portland, ME 04106, United States  

Maine Lighthouses

6. Maine Lighthouses: West Quoddy Head Lighthouse

West Quoddy Head Lighthouse marks the easternmost tip of the United States. Located in Quoddy Head State Park, Lubec, Maine, this lighthouse was opened in 1808. It was beneficial for the ships to pass through the Quoddy Narrows.

In 1858, the original lighthouse tower was replaced with a 49-foot high, unique red and white striped, circular brick tower which is still active.

Maine Lighthouses West Quoddy Head Lighthouse
Quoddy Head Lighthouse

And another highlighted feature of this lighthouse is its Third Order Fresnel lens. This old-fashioned Fresnel lens is one of the few active Fresnel lenses used in the United States.

Due to all these special features, West Quoddy Head Lighthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places on July 4, 1980.

Therefore, it is one of the top tourist attractions in Maine.

Address: West Quoddy Head Light, 973 S Lubec Rd, Lubec, ME 04652, United States  Phone: +1 207-733-2180

Maine Lighthouses

7. Maine Lighthouses: Marshall Point Lighthouse

Marshall Point Lighthouse is a picturesque lighthouse located in St. George, Maine. It became more famous after the movie scene in Forest Gump. In the movie, Tom Hanks ran out on the wooden runway to Marshall Point Lighthouse.

Built in 1858, this historic lighthouse is 24 feet high. So, you can get scenic views of the Atlantic Ocean, especially in the sunset.

Marshall Point Lighthouse Maine
Marshall Point Lighthouse

On the other hand, Marshall Point Lighthouse features an interesting summer-only museum, a gift shop, and a nice garden as well.

After visiting the lighthouse, you can hike to the small fishing village, Port Clyde, to eat delicious seafood, observe wildlife, and take boat rides.

Address: Marshall Point Rd, Port Clyde, ME 04855, United States  Phone: +1 207-372-6450 

Maine Lighthouses

8. Pemaquid Point Lighthouse

Located at the tip of the Pemaquid Neck, Pemaquid Point Lighthouse is a historic lighthouse built in 1827. Therefore it was registered in the National Register of Historic Places in 1985.

This lighthouse is 12 m high and is made with concrete and rubble masonry. Now, it operates and maintains by the Bristol Parks and Recreation Department.

Pemaquid Point Lighthouse Maine
Pemaquid Point Lighthouse

And it features a museum with interesting historical things in the former keeper’s house on the ground floor. Also, there’s an apartment on the second floor for weekly rentals too.

Most importantly, Pemaquid Point Lighthouse offers you a great opportunity to visit inside and climb up to the top to get scenic views of the Atlantic Ocean. Actually, it is a rare chance to climb up to an active lighthouse.

Although the lighthouse is short (38 feet), you can get spectacular views since it is located 80 feet above sea level.

Pemaquid Point Lighthouse is the first lighthouse to display on U.S. currency (Maine state quarter). So, surely add it to your Maine lighthouse list.

Address: Bristol, ME 04554, United States  Phone: +1 207-677-2492

Maine Lighthouses

9. Maine Lighthouses: Monhegan Island Lighthouse

Located in Monhegan Island, Monhegan Island Lighthouse was first established in 1824. Then its structure was changed by the famous American architect Alexander Parris in 1824.

Being the second-highest lighthouse in Maine with 178 feet, it was also added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980. Also, at that time, Monhegan Island Lighthouse had the highest focal plane in Maine.

Monhegan Island Lighthouse Maine
Monhegan Island Lighthouse

Since it just ten miles southwest of Port Clyde, you can easily get there. On the other hand, as it is located highest point on Monhegan Island, you can get the ocean’s best views and surroundings.

Now, Monhegan Island Lighthouse features the Monhegan Museum that exhibits the island’s interesting history.

As it is an active lighthouse, the public is not allowed to visit inside. But, obviously, the grounds are accessible.

Address: Monhegan, ME 04852, United States

Maine Lighthouses

10. Maine Lighthouses: Cape Neddick Lighthouse

Cape Neddick Light or Nubble Lighthouse is located in Cape Neddick, York, Maine. Constructed in 1879, it was automated in 1987.

Cape Neddick Lighthouse is one of the most famous lighthouses on the list due to its unique location and scenic views. Also, it is one of the most photographed lighthouses in the world as well.

Maine Lighthouses Cape Neddick Lighthouse
Cape Neddick Lighthouse

As it sits on a small island called Nubble Island, a few hundred feet off York’s rocky coastline, a cable car was used to supply goods to the lighthouse keeper.

Locals mostly call it Nubble Lighthouse, and it was very popular among locals and tourists in the past. But, finally, it became a threat to the lighthouse operations. Then, Nubble Island was closed to the visitors.

But, you can view this beautiful Cape Neddick Light from the nearby Sohier Park.

Address: Sohier Park Rd, York, ME 03909, United States  Phone: +1 207-363-1040 

Maine Lighthouses

11. Maine Lighthouses: Whaleback Light

Whaleback Light is a historic lighthouse constructed in 1830. But, due to poor construction, it had to rebuild as a new tower with granite blocks in 1872. It is the one you can still see in the Atlantic Ocean.

Whaleback Light is a stone lighthouse located on a rocky outcrop off the shore between Fort Foster and Wood Island in Kittery. It marks the mouth of the Piscataqua River in Kittery, Maine.

Maine Lighthouses Whaleback Light
Whaleback Light

Whaleback’s light was automated in the 1960s and now contains a modern LED light. Since its light is 59 feet above sea level, it is very beneficial for ships.

However, it is also on the list of the National Register of Historic Places since 1988.

As this beacon is located offshore, visitors cannot directly access it. But, anyone can get scenic views from the shores of Piscataqua River on New Hampshire’s side and Maine’s side. Also, as cruise ships pass close to the shore, you can surely get picturesque views.

Currently, Whaleback Lighthouse is owned and maintained by the Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses and the American Lighthouse Foundation.

Maine Lighthouses

12. Owls Head Lighthouse, Maine

Owls Head Lighthouse is also a historic lighthouse located at the entrance of Rockland Harbor in Owls Head town (on western Penobscot Bay), Knox County, Maine. Opened in 1825, it is a still-active lighthouse that helps with navigation.

It is a picturesque lighthouse that offers breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. Especially in the sunset. Also, it offers views of Rockland’s nearby islands and Maine’s windjammer fleet.

Owls Head Lighthouse, Maine
Owls Head Lighthouse

Sitting 80 feet above the Penobscot Bay, its fourth-order Fresnel lens is very beneficial for the ships.

There’s a large parking space near the Owls Head Lighthouse. And it offers public entrance to the grounds on selected days from spring to fall. Check here for the schedule:

Address: 186 Lighthouse Rd, Owls Head, ME 04854, United States  Phone: +1 207-594-4174

Maine Lighthouses

13. Burnt Island Lighthouse, Maine

Burnt Island Lighthouse is the second oldest surviving lighthouse in Maine. So, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.

Built-in 1821, Burnt Island Lighthouse is located in Boothbay Harbor. It is 9.14 m high and was very helpful for navigation. Therefore, it was automated in 1988.

Burnt Island Lighthouse, Maine
Burnt Island Lighthouse

Now it features a living history museum with interesting exhibits handled by the state Department of Marine Resources. Also, it hosts history education programs and seasonal tours with the help of Keepers of the Burnt Island Light, a non-profit group.

To reach the Burnt Island Lighthouse, you have to take a boat or ferry ride to Burnt Island. Don’t worry; many local services are available for that.

If you are a history lover, do not miss Burnt Island Lighthouse when you are in Maine.

Address: Southport, ME 04576, United States

Maine Lighthouses

14. Maine Lighthouses: Boon Island Lighthouse

Boon Island Lighthouse was first constructed in 1811. But, it was washed away from a strong storm. Then, the new granite tower was built in 1855, and it is still in action.

Boon Island Lighthouse is located on Boon Island, off the southern coast of Maine, United States. (Boon Island is a 300-by-700-foot island located near Cape Neddick)

Maine Lighthouses Boon Island Lighthouse
Boon Island Lighthouse

It is famous as the tallest lighthouse in New England and Maine. Having 133 feet of height, its focal plane is at 137 feet above mean high water. Therefore, it can cover a huge area.

Before the automation in 1980, Boon Island Lighthouse had an original Second Order Fresnel lens. But, it was damaged after a strong storm.

Due to these reasons, Boon Island Lighthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

Today the lighthouse operates by the US Coastal Guard. But sadly, visitors are not allowed to enter it. So, you can view it on a boat ride or an aircraft. Also, it is distantly viewable from the shores of Sohier Park in York and Long Sands Beach.

But the best way to obviously taking a boat ride.

Address: Boon Island, ME, United States

Maine Lighthouses

15. Maine Lighthouses: Whitlocks Mill Lighthouse

Whitlocks Mill Lighthouse is located on the south bank of the St. Croix River in Calais, Maine. Opened in 1910, it is 7.62 m high. Being the northernmost lighthouse in Maine, Whitlocks Mill Light was the lighthouse built in Maine as well.

Whitlocks Mill Lighthouse Maine
Whitlocks Mill Lighthouse

Sitting near the US Canada border, Whitlocks Mill Lighthouse does not guide oceangoing vessels. It marks a dangerous bend in the St. Croix River.

Originally, it was just a bright lantern hung on a tree by a person named Whitlock after a request from the Coast Guard. Whitlock was a miller.

After that, the existing lighthouse was built. That’s how its name was created.

Address: Calais, ME 04619, United States

Maine Lighthouses

16. Seguin Island Light Station, Maine

Seguin Island is located in the Gulf of Maine near the mouth of the Kennebec River. The historic Seguin Island Light Station is located on this island, and it was built in 1795 after an order from George Washington.

Being the second-oldest lighthouse and one of the tallest lighthouses of Maine’s coastal, Seguin Island Light Station houses a 9-foot-tall first-order Fresnel lens. So, it is visible for over 20 nautical miles away.

Seguin Island Light Station, Maine
Seguin Island Light Station

And Seguin Island Light is the only lighthouse in Maine to have a first-order Fresnel lens.

If you plan to visit this lighthouse, it is only accessible via a boat or ferry from Popham Beach. There are many boat and ferry services to take you to the picturesque 64-acre Seguin Island. Aside from visiting the lighthouse, you can explore beaches, nature trails, and wildlife on the island.

Due to these special features, Seguin Island Light Station was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.

Address: Friends of Seguin Island Light Station, 72 Front Street, Suite 3, Bath, Maine 04530, United States       Phone: 207-443-4808

Maine Lighthouses

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17. Maine Lighthouses: Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse

Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse is a historic lighthouse complex built-in 1902. Located at the end of the Rockland Breakwater in Maine’s Rockland Harbor, this lighthouse shows an impressive Colonial Revival architectural style.

Maine Lighthouses Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse
Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse

Since it is located at the end of one mile long Rockland Breakwater, you can get sparkling views of the Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse and the Atlantic Ocean. So, are you ready to capture all the scenes on your cam?

Address: 44.104031, -69.077487, Rockland, ME 04841, United States   Phone: +1 207-594-4174

Maine Lighthouses

18. Goat Island Lighthouse, Maine

Goat Island Lighthouse is also a historic lighthouse that was first established in 1835. Located off Cape Porpoise, this lighthouse is near Kennebunkport in Southern Maine.

Sitting one mile away from the shore, it guards the entrance to Cape Porpoise Harbor. In 1859, the lighthouse was upgraded to the current brick tower. It contains a fifth-order Fresnel lens.

Goat Island Lighthouse, Maine
Goat Island Lighthouse, Maine

Goat Island Lighthouse is one of the last lighthouses to be automated.

If you like to view this lighthouse, the best place is the mainland at the Cape Porpoise Pier.

Address: Kennebunkport, ME 04046, United States

Maine Lighthouses

19. Maine Lighthouses: Petit Manan Lighthouse 

First constructed in 1817, Petit Manan Lighthouse is a historic lighthouse located in Petit Manan Island, Maine.

The island is located between Dyer Bay and Pigeon Hill Bay in the Gulf of Maine. Now the island is handled by the Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge.

Petit Manan Lighthouse, Maine
Petit Manan Lighthouse

Having a 123 feet height, Petit Manan Lighthouse is one of the tallest and oldest lighthouses in Maine as well. Therefore, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1987.

Looking for the best way to view Petit Manan Lighthouse? Just take a boat tour. It is the best and only way. And you may spot some Atlantic puffins too.

Address: Steuben, ME 04680, United States  

Maine Lighthouses

20. Maine Lighthouses: Portland Breakwater Lighthouse (Bug Light)

Portland Breakwater Lighthouse or Bug Light is a small historic lighthouse located in South Portland, Maine. Opened in 1855, this lighthouse is 9.14 m high.

The famous American architect Thomas Ustick Walter is the designer of this cute Bug Light by following the Greek Revival architectural style.

Portland Breakwater Lighthouse (Bug Light)
Portland Breakwater Lighthouse (Bug Light)

Although Portland Breakwater Lighthouse is a small lighthouse, it has played a major role in protecting the Portland Harbor.

Do you like to visit this living history? Well, it is open to the public. Just drive onto Madison Street and continue until meeting the Bug Light. You can get scenic views of the ocean and have quality time.

Address: S Portland Greenbelt Pathway, South Portland, ME 04106, United States  Phone: +1 207-767-7670

Maine Lighthouses