Lighthouses of Portland & the Area, Portland

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  • Portland Head Light
    Portland Head Light
    by CEP1863
  • Portland Head Light
    Portland Head Light
    by CEP1863
  • Portland Head Light
    Portland Head Light
    by CEP1863
  • Jefie's Profile Photo

    Portland Headlight at Fort Williams Park

    by Jefie Updated Sep 13, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Portland Headlight, Maine, USA
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    Portland Headlight probably is Maine's most famous landmark. Located on the grounds of beautiful Fort Williams Park, this lighthouse was built at the end of the 18th century and was originally lighted with 16 whale oil lamps. Throughout the years, these have been replaced with lenses and the original tower has been elevated to its current 92' height. The former lightkeepers' residence has now been transformed into a small museum where you can learn more about the history of Portland Headlight (Open from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm; $2 for adults, $1 for children).

    Fort Williams Park is open from sunrise to sunset, free of charge (free parking is available). This 90-acre park offers splendid views of the bay, and there are several spots where you can take pictures of Portland Headlight along the walking trails. There's also a small beach (but the water is pretty cold) and numerous picnic tables. I did not, however, find a place where you could buy drinks or snacks, so you'd better make sure to fill your picnic basket beforehand :o)

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    • Budget Travel
    • Historical Travel

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  • Jefie's Profile Photo

    Spring Point Ledge Light

    by Jefie Updated Sep 14, 2007

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    Breakwater leading to Spring Point Ledge Light

    Spring Point Ledge Light is a 54-foot tall "sparkplug-style" lighthouse that was built in 1897. It used to be isolated from the main land until a breakwater was constructed in 1951. People are free to walk up to the lighthouse (make sure to wear good shoes, the breakwater is uneven, to say the least) and during summer, it is possible to go inside the lighthouse on Saturdays from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm for a small fee. Again, you need good shoes because you'll have to make it up some pretty steep and narrow stairs, and for this reason, small children are not allowed inside. Tours include a visit of the keeper's quarters inside the lighthouse and some stories about how they would keep themselves busy during the days they spent in the middle of the sea, cut off from their friends and family.

    Spring Point Ledge Light is located next to the Portland Harbor Museum and on the grounds of Fort Preble (1808). There is also a small beach next to it.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Museum Visits
    • Hiking and Walking

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  • SLLiew's Profile Photo

    LIghthouses tours

    by SLLiew Updated Aug 2, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Portland is a great place to visit lighthouses.

    The most visited and photographed lighthouse "Portland Head Light", located in nearby Cape Elizabeth, south of Portland.

    Maine is a major fishing and shipping area with rocky and cliff coast, open windy ocean and foggy at times.

    These historical lighthouses were critical during the days using whale oil light before GPS, modern electronics and radar nagivation to guide ships, boats and fisherman safely home.

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    Two Lights State Park

    by dracko Written Dec 24, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This state park is actually in Cape Elizabeth, but is close enough to Portland. It's a nice state park, very pretty views of the ocean and the lights. If you stay on the Two Lights road that leads to the park to the end, you'll get to a nice little cove, an expanse of cliffs that stretches for a little while, and a nice little seafood restaurant that is almost always busy during summer. Definitely a nice place for a few hours' getaway from the city. Also a great place to visit at night, although you do need to watch where you put your feet on the cliffs.

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  • TempNomad's Profile Photo

    Fort Williams Park

    by TempNomad Written Sep 6, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Entrance to the park

    It's a lovely park that gets filled up on the weekends. Tour buses and the trolley go here regularly. It has the famous Portland Headlight and Museum to snap photos of, and there are informational billboards that talk about life at Fort Williams. Picnic tables, lawns, beautiful views all welcome you here!

    The Museum's number is below.

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    • Museum Visits
    • Historical Travel

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  • TempNomad's Profile Photo

    Spring Point Light

    by TempNomad Written Sep 6, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    It's an easy thing to do (watch your step!) and it's filled with romance, wind in your hair, ocean views, bobbing buoys, and photo ops. Take a few moments to soak in the solitude of being on the edge of the earth.

    Anyway, Spring Point Light is a small lighthouse with a rocky path...and it is kept company by the tiny Portland Harbor Museum/shop on land.

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    • Hiking and Walking
    • Historical Travel
    • Museum Visits

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  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo

    Spring Point Lighthouse

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 28, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Map of the lighthouse location
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    The l;ighthouse was constructured in 1897 to try and deter many wrecks on the habor. A 900 feet granite rock water break was added in 1951 at a cost of $200,000. The break is 15 feet abover wate level. The candlepower has increased to now be 200,000 power-a lot. It went automatic in 1934. It is rarely open to public; maybe once a year.

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  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo

    Point Head Lighthouse at Ft. Williams Park

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 28, 2008

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    Close view of lighthouse
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    This lighthouse is still being used. It happens to be a drop off point for buses so everyone can take a picture. Yes, me too. But I tried to get the buses out of the way. In 1787, George Washington had the lighthouse built and it burned whale oil for years. Then in m id 1800's lens were put in and 1964 an autobeacon installed. It is the most photographed lighthouse in the US.

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    • Historical Travel

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  • sswagner's Profile Photo

    Two Lights State Park

    by sswagner Written Feb 8, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Two Lights

    If you are driving on the east coast and happen to be near the Portland area, this is a good place to visit and see some of the lighthouses in this area. Two Lights State Park is outside of Portland to the south. The lighthouse that I saw stood on the small rocky ledges jutting out into the sea. I was albe to climb around some of the rocks just across a small inlet from it to get a good view. One must be careful around the rocks since they can be slippery when wet.

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    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

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  • Photo Opp

    by JShultz Written Jul 12, 2008

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    One of the most photographed lighthouses in the United States. Once you visit, you'll see why. You can't get a bad shot. Whether photography is your hobby or it's the first time you've ever taken a picture, you'll leave with professional looking images.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • National/State Park
    • Beaches

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  • Icemaiden02's Profile Photo

    Portland Head Light

    by Icemaiden02 Written May 6, 2007

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    Portland Head Light

    Portland Head Light was not only Maine's first lighthouse, commissioned by George Washington in 1790, but also the first light to be completed under the direction of the newly formed government of the United States.

    It was automated on August 9, 1989 to celebrate the bicentennial of the US lighthouse system. Portland Head is one of the most photographed lighthouses in Maine.

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  • Visiting the Lighthouses around Portland

    by Coarstours Written Aug 27, 2005

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    Pemaquid Light

    Maine's rocky coast is ideal for visiting the many lighthouses on the coast. A trip to Pemaquid Light State Park is about 1 hour from Portland. This lighthouse is best seen from below the colorful rocks

    Related to:
    • Sailing and Boating
    • Beaches

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  • BabciaMaine's Profile Photo

    Portland Observatory

    by BabciaMaine Updated Sep 8, 2003

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    watching the channel

    The observatory was not a lighthouse. It was built in 1807 and is the only remaining maritime signal station in the US making it a unique architectural site. Coded signal flags were used to alert harbor merchants to the appearance of specific ships coming into view via telesopes .The merchants could then reserve a berth on wharves and hire stevedores before a vessel docked. The 86 foot octogon shaped building wa added to the National register of Historic places in 1972

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  • See Lighthouses

    by dres1414 Written Dec 26, 2011

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    Try to go to the lighthouses near the ocean. It's a beautiful sight, when the water is splashing on the rocks, when the birds flies around . And on the way, take a stop at one of the amazing beaches all the way along the coast of Maine.

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    • Road Trip

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  • Mayzhou100's Profile Photo

    Portland Head Light

    by Mayzhou100 Written Aug 8, 2013

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    2 more images

    If you google "Portland Maine", you will see Portland Head Light show up in the first few pictures. It already becomes the symbol of Portland,ME. Portland Head Light is a historic lighthouse in Cape Elizabeth. The light station sits on a head of land at the entrance of Portland Harbor.The Lighthouse is so beautiful that no matter where you are, you can always get a good shoot.

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    • Family Travel
    • National/State Park

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