Thursday, October 9, 2014

You Too can be a Lighthouse Keeper

Lighthouses are fun to visit.  They give you a sense of history and romance and are great places to relax and enjoy the views, but did you ever consider what it would be like to be a lighthouse keeper?

With modern technology most lighthouses are a thing of the past and are mainly restored and used for tourists.  There are a still a few working lighthouses around, but even those are automated and do not have a need for a daily lighthouse keeper.

This past week I went on a tour of one lighthouse where you can stay the night and imagine what it would be like to be a lighthouse keeper.  Rose Island lighthouse, pictured above, is on an 18 acre island just off the coast of Newport Rhode Island.  Guests can spend a week or a night and the island can also be rented for weddings and special events.  I was only there for an hour but I think it would be cool to stay in the lighthouse and experience it during the night.  For more about my tour of this lighthouse and photographs of others in the Newport area stop by my page at Rhode Island Lighthouses .

During past trips I have had the privilege of staying overnight in lighthouses in both Michigan and Minnesota.  I loved being able to climb the towers in the middle of the night and looking out to the ocean.  It was also a great way to capture photographs at all hours of the day and night. The photo below is from Big Bay Lighthouse in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  It is a Bed and Breakfast we stayed in for two nights.
Here is more information on this charming lighthouse. Big Bay Lighthouse Bed and Breakfast
The other lighthouse bed and breakfast we stayed at was in Two Harbors Minnesota.  We just stayed there one night but it was a great experience.  Here is the page I wrote about Two Harbors. In the early morning I got out of bed and wandered onto the lighthouse grounds to take this photo just before sunrise.


  1. Spending the night in a lighthouse would be an awesome experience! I can well imagine how much you enjoyed being able to walk around and take pictures at sunrise. Renting the island for a wedding would be totally awesome. How many people can stay at the lighthouse at the same time? I would imagine it would have a very limited occupancy.

  2. Cynthia It was pretty awesome staying in the lighthouses. The one that we stayed at in Big Bay Michigan had 7 rooms. The night we stayed there were just two other couples staying. The one at Two Harbors had 4 rooms. It looked to me like the one we just visited on Rose Island just had room for one couple to stay in lighthouse itself, but they also had several buildings on the island made into guest cottages. The Big Bay and Two Harbors were both bed and breakfast inns so you had a bit of pampering too. On Rose Island you would be roughing it a bit. You had to bring in your own food and pump your own water at the well.