California Lighthouse History

In the state of California, there’s over 800 miles of coastline, packed with incredible ocean views, quaint seaside towns, and some of the most beautiful lighthouses this country has to offer. The first lighthouse built on the West Coast was right here in California on Alcatraz Island in 1854. Since then, at least 44 lighthouses have been built on the California coast, shining their bright lights out to sea to warn ships of rocky shores and to help them navigate the dark waters of the Pacific Ocean.

A number of these lighthouses are no longer standing, and many are on private property or are restricted to visitors. However, there are still so many California lighthouses worth learning about, and we’ve added them here to help you navigate your travels of the California coastline! Planning a lighthouse road trip along the California coast? Get your lighthouse history fix below.

Are you on social media? Check out the hashtag #CaLighthouseHistory on Instagram to see more historical photos and information.

Northern California Lighthouses

St. George’s Reef Lighthouse
Battery Point Lighthouse
Trinidad Head Lighthouse (and Trinidad Memorial Lighthouse)
Table Bluff Lighthouse
Humboldt Harbor Lighthouse (no longer standing)
Punta Gorda Lighthouse
Cape Mendocino Lighthouse
Point Cabrillo Lighthouse (this whole website is dedicated to this one!)
Point Arena Lighthouse
Point Reyes Lighthouse

Bay Area Lighthouses

Farallon Islands Lighthouse
Mare Island Lighthouse (no longer standing)
Carquinez Strait Lighthouse
Roe Island Lighthouse (no longer standing)
East Brother Lighthouse
Point Knox Lighthouse (no longer standing)
Point Blunt Lighthouse
Lime Point
Point Diablo
Point Bonita
Alcatraz Island Lighthouse
Fort Point Lighthouse
Mile Rocks Lighthouse
Yerba Buena Lighthouse
Oakland Harbor Lighthouse

Central California Lighthouses

Point Montara Lighthouse
Pigeon Point Lighthouse
Ano Nuevo Lighthouse
Santa Cruz Lighthouse
Santa Cruz Breakwater Lighthouse
Point Pinos Lighthouse
Point Sur Lighthouse
Piedras Blancas Lighthouse
Point San Luis Lighthouse

Southern California Lighthouses

Point Arguello Lighthouse (no longer standing)
Point Conception Lighthouse
Santa Barbara Lighthouse (no longer standing)
Point Hueneme Lighthouse
Anacapa Island Lighthouse
Point Vicente Lighthouse
Point Fermin Lighthouse
Los Angeles Harbor (Angel’s Gate) Lighthouse
Long Beach Harbor Lighthouse
Ballast Point Lighthouse (no longer standing)
Old Point Loma Lighthouse
New Point Loma Lighthouse

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