For centuries, lighthouses have provided a beacon of light for ships seeking safe passage through fog, storms and treacherous waters. Today, many of those towering structures also offer safe harbor for families interested in sleeping amid seafaring history.
1. SAUGERTIES LIGHTHOUSE, SAUGERTIES, NEW YORK Stunning beauty and rich history beckon visitors to this alluring locale where the Catskill Mountains meet the Hudson River. Learn how whale oil lamps kept the beacon burning. Wander along nature trails where beavers, eagles and herons make their home. Docent-guided tours are available Sundays during summer.
2. BIG BAY POINT LIGHTHOUSE, BIG BAY, MICHIGAN Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this lighthouse captures the romance of an era when mariners relied on lightkeepers to bring them safely through this challenging stretch of Michigan coastline. Enjoy the peaceful solitude of the pristine, cliffside location overlooking Lake Superior. Hiking, biking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are available on 40 acres of trails. For safety reasons, children must be 16 or older.
3. PIGEON POINT LIGHTHOUSE, PESCADERO, CALIFORNIA It’s just 50 miles south of San Francisco. Enjoy panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean while learning how mariners once navigated the central California coast with the help of the 115-foot lighthouse. Be on the lookout for whales, wade into tide pools and catch the star show overhead. This unique hostel offers shared and private rooms.
4. TWO HARBORS LIGHT STATION, TWO HARBORS, MINNESOTA Spend the night in the state’s oldest operating lighthouse, which overlooks Lake Superior. Constructed in 1892 to provide safe passage into the Agate Bay harbor, today visitors and overnight guests can learn about modern navigation as well as steep in the region’s history through the on-site museum.
5. HECETA HEAD LIGHTHOUSE, YACHATS, OREGON Spend the night at this working lighthouse that casts a beam 21 miles out to sea. An interpretive center, located on the first floor of the nearby Keeper’s House, offers free, docent-led, guided tours in the summer. The lighthouse offers tours year-round. A seven-course breakfast awaits B&B guests.
— The Dallas Morning News (TNS)