At the end of Long Island you will find Montauk Point Lighthouse.
The views here are very rewarding. There is also a museum which is open at varying times throughout the year - it's well worth checking the website below if you wish to visit the museum. Admission to the museum costs (accurate at October 2010) :
Adults: ............ $9.00
Seniors: ............ $7.00
Children: ............ $4.00
Montauk Point State Park is literally at the end of everything. The park has the Montauk Point Lighthouse, the beaches (pretty rocky), a picnic area, gift shop and some nature trails. Liz and I like to come to the Park for the lighthouse and the beautiful ocean views. Our most recent visit was during an unseasonably warm April day. The sun was shining , the sky was blue and the ocean breeze was heavenly. It made for a perfect setting to walk along the water and explore the park.
The lighthouse is a definite must see when visiting Montauk. It is literally at the end of Montauk; hence the term the "point". The Montauk Point Lighthouse was built November 5, 1796. It was the first lighthouse in New York State and the fourth oldest active lighthouse in the United States. The sandstone lighthouse stands over 100 feet tall with 137 iron steps to the top of the tower. Every five seconds a light flashes from the lighthouse that can be seen 19 nautical miles out.
Admission is : Adults: $8.00, Seniors: $7.00 and children under 12yr old $4.00.
We enjoyed a beautiful sunny and warm day exploring the point, lighthouse and the spectacular ocean views.
most of the beaches in Montauk are public and free. some of the beaches are part of a state park, like Hither Hills, so there's a parking fee ($8).
in general, Montauk is a very small, laid-back beach community. my first visits to Montauk were in the 80's during my late teens and early twenties. Visiting again over Memorial Day weekend '07 i can say that Montauk hasn't changed too much.
a trip to Montauk is not a trip to Montauk without visiting the lighthouse at the tip of the south fork of Long Island. excellent views all around.
if you visit later in the day you're likely to see some deer come out of the woods and feed on the grass.
there's also parking and facilities for small campers - the fee is $8 for parking between 8am and 4pm (no fee for parking after 4).
there's some walking and hiking trails, but check yourself for ticks!
Camp Hero is an abandoned military base at the tip of Long Island and was established during World War II. a lot of stories and rumours abound about Fort Hero as being a place where government experiments in time travel were conducted . don't be frightened. do a google search on Camp Hero and one can spend a lot of time reading up on the rumours if you're interested. Camp Hero is also a park and is accessible by car and open until dusk. we had no trouble driving into the "base" and parking and following the marked signs on foot to the bluff overlooks for some great views of the ocean. there are parts of Camp Hero which are fenced-off and marked "Area Closed - Trespassers will be Prosecuted". so if you want silent-running black helicopters following you home at night go ahead and break in. in addition to the large radio tower there are concrete bunkers built into the hills, making some of the facilities underground. those are also off-limits.
The lighthouse is a great place to go no matter what time of year. I particularly like going in the winter when the area is most likely to be vacant. You can walk along the rock or if the lighthouse is open, you can walk to the top, up many stairs. Along the rocks you are likely to see many fishermen waiting for their catch. There are also some trails in the area that you can walk along and keep your eyes open for some of the local wildlife.
From this area you can also see the infamous Montauk dish, a satellite dish stationed at the nearby camp hero. Camp Hero is an old, no longer used, airforce base. This base is also house to many local myths and conspiracy theories. Read more about Camp Hero HERE
Its January, well as i write this I would be lieing cause right now its March and spring is in reach. This photo and this hike took place in Jan. Thats more like it. I wouldn't be writing anything if it was January because my travel urge was flacid, dead, limp then. I was trying to just get outside at all. Trying to make money, swinging from the corporate nipple like a grandfather clock. We hiked this trail for hours, walking forward with no second guessing turns. I saw the light threw the trees and i knew somewhere beyond was water. I am pulled to it with a gravitational pull. Upon reaching watersd edge, an edge I never knew existed out there on the eastern fork of LI, I put these sack of complicated bone structures under that low temperatured waters. Submerged in January. I wish I could depend on this for every winter. I would never dread it. I will welcome the gray skys that lumber on in in November.
First bypass the Montauk town after making a stop to get yoself some bodily fuel. You'll pass the first lookout on the left and than the next overlook on the right is where the path will start. Do walk following the blue diamonds which make a dotted line along the Overton Brook Trail. Weave this path over the brook and through the woods but no need to stop at grandmother house cause further down mother nature layed down Oyster Pond. This climatic point in the trail is only and hour or two out there, so do make it all the way, I know....your lazy, but try.
Montauk Point Lighthouse is a wonderful place to visit. I've been there twice. If you are going to Long Island don't miss to visit the lighthouse.
On a clear day you can see Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Block Island. During 1996 Montauk is decked out in its bicentennial year finery. The tower and grounds are now maintained by the Montauk Historical Society, and are open for tours 10 - 5:30. There is a gift shop and a museum with some great exhibits.
The tower was constructed of "brown Chatham stone" in 1796, on Turtle Hil, 130 yards from the water's edge. The 13 oil lamps shone for the first time in the spring of 1797, after difficulties shipping oil and lantern glass to the site.
During the 1800's several changes were made to the original construction: in 1838 a brick dwelling was added on to the 16' x 34' keeper's dwelling; in 1849 a chandelier with 15 lamps with 21" reflectors was hung in the lantern; in 1857 Montauk received a first-order fresnel lens. Extensive renovations were made in 1860: fourteen feet had to be added to the tower to accomodate the new lantern with a service room beneath to maintain the revolving apparatus. An iron balcony and iron stairway were added at this time, bringing Montauk's tower height to its current 110 feet. The double keeper's dwelling was built during the renovation of 1860.
In 1900 Montauk received it's brown band midway up the white tower, and in 1903 the first-order lens was replaced with a 3.5 order bivalve "clamshell" lens. During World War II the Coast Guard Artillery Firetower was added to the site as part of the East Coast Defense Shield. In 1987 the bivalve lens was replaced with a revolving airport beacon.
Severe erosion threatened Montauk Point during the 1960's, but a woman named Giorgina Reid devoted 15 years of her life to an innovative terracing project that stabelized the bluffs and saved the light. More recently a stone wrapper has added further protection plus a great place to fish or meditate in the shadow of the lighthouse.
The beaches in Montauk are quiet and beautiful. Well, actually, most of the time it's quiet. In the summer, the population grows quite a bit with city dwellers making their way to a beach getaway. We were here in March, 2001....so there wasn't anyone here at all. It was cold, but the ocean is the ocean to us. We love the beach year round.
Alaina and I have always loved lighthouses. We have many models throughout our house. Montauk lighthouse has been guiding ships to land for over 2 centuries now. Unfortuneately, it was closed when we stopped by to visit.
Walk around Gosman's Dock at Montauk Harbor
This area, with its little shops, restaurants, and fish market, is the epitome of a quaint fishing village. Walk out onto the Jetty at the entrance to the harbor at sunset for a beautiful scene. There are periodic jazz concerts on the green with the gazebo.