Are you coming for an event? Consider staying overnight at the Light Station. See our rental units.
Coast Guard Auxiliary Led Lantern Room Tours
Please join the Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 87, our modern lightkeepers, and the volunteers at Point Cabrillo Light Station for a unique opportunity to visit the Lantern Room and the beautifully restored operational 3rd order Fresnel lens.
These tours are offered only eight days each year.
The last two tours in 2017 are:
- Saturday August 5, 2017 – National Lighthouse Day
- Saturday September 23, 2017 – Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo Day
The partial tour schedule for 2018 is:
- Saturday & Sunday March 3 and 4, 2018 – Whale Festival Week 1
- Saturday & Sunday March 17 and 18, 2018 – Whale Festival Week 3
- Saturday May 5, 2018 – Historic Mendocino Day
- Saturday June 9, 2018 – Point Cabrillo Light Station’s 109th Birthday
The Lighthouse Lantern Room and Fresnel Lens Tours are offered from 10am until 4pm. Be sure to allow time for the half mile walk to the lighthouse. Tickets are $5.00 per person; the fee supports the lighthouse maintenance fund. The tours are a treat for the whole family but please note that children must be at least 42 inches tall to participate.
The Point Cabrillo Light Station was established in 1909 on a point of land extending westward into the ocean. This location was selected for the Lighthouse by the US Lighthouse Service so that the light would be most visible to shipping on the hazardous coast of Mendocino. This same attribute makes Point Cabrillo a preeminent location from which to watch the annual migration of the gray whales from the lagoons of the Baja Peninsula in Mexico to their summer feeding grounds in the Arctic Ocean.
A spectacular opportunity for family fun awaits visitors during Whale Festival on the first and third weekends of March at the Light Station from 10 am to 4 pm each day. [See above for exact dates.] In addition to a grandstand view of the annual gray whale migration, you may visit the 240 gallon saltwater aquarium and our Marine Science Exhibit.
The 1st Assistant Lightkeeper’s House is also open. This period museum shows how lightkeepers and their families lived in the 1930s.
Point Cabrillo Lightkeepers Association (PCLK) volunteer docents will highlight Light Station history and local culture with visitor presentations at the Lighthouse and other locations in the State Historic Park. Weather permitting, docents will also lead walks to nearby Frolic Cove and relate the story of the clipper brig Frolic, wrecked off the cove in July 1850 bound from China to San Francisco with a valuable cargo of Chinese merchandise for the Gold Rush miners and their families.
During Whale Festival, we request a $5.00 parking donation. The money raised goes toward our education fund, which supports school field trips to the Light Station.
To learn more about the gray whale migration, click here.