5 Greater Portland & Casco Bay Lighthouses To Photograph

The Great Portland and Casco Bay area of Maine is one of the most lovely areas in the state. The area is known for the beautiful city of Portland along with lovely towns, stunning parks, amazing islands, and, of course, lighthouses! This blog post will showcase 5 beautiful lighthouses in the Great Portland and Casco Bay area – including the legendary Portland Head Lighthouse. Check them all out below!

Halfway Rock Light Station

  • Location: Casco Bay
  • Coordinates: 43.6558°N 70.0368°W
  • Year First Lit: 1871
  • Activity: Active
  • Focal Height: 76 ft (23 m)
  • Location: Here

Halfway Rock Light Station is located in Casco Bay off the coast of Maine. The lighthouse sits roughly halfway between Cape Elizabeth and Cape Small – which are about 18 miles apart. Attention was first brought to Halfway Rock in 1835 when a ship ran aground on the rock during a storm. The rock only stands a few feet above the water which makes it hard to see when waves are present. Over the next decades, more ships ran aground and in 1871 a lighthouse was finally constructed on the rock. After just over 100 years of operation, the lighthouse was automated in 1975 and the keepers were removed. In 2014, the lighthouse was sold at auction for $283,000.

Portland Breakwater Light (Bug Light)

  • Location: South Portland
  • Coordinates: 43.6555°N 70.2349°W
  • Year First Lit: 1855 (Former) 1875 (Current)
  • Activity: Active (Inactive: 1942–2002)
  • Focal Height: 30 ft (9.1 m)
  • Location: Here

Portland Breakwater Light (most commonly known as Bug Light) is a stunning 25-foot lighthouse located in South Portland, Maine. The first Portland Breakwater Light was built in 1855 at the end of the Portland Harbor breakwater to guide boaters in-and-out of the harbor. The breakwater was extended and in 1875 and a new lighthouse was built. The current lighthouse stands 25 feet tall and is made of curved cast-iron plates. The lighthouse was decommissioned in 1943, but was restored in 1989 and reactivated in 2002. Currently, the lighthouse serves as a private aid to navigation in the US Coast Guard Light List and a town park (Bug Light Park) allows visitors to see the lighthouse up close.

Portland Head Light

  • Location: Cape Elizabeth (Casco Bay)
  • Coordinates: 43.6231°N 70.2079°W
  • Year First Lit: 1791
  • Activity: Active
  • Focal Height: 101 ft (31 m)
  • Location: Here

Portland Head Light is the oldest lighthouse in Maine and arguably the most famous. The lighthouse is beautifully situated at the entrance to Portland Harbor and it is complete with a large lighthouse keeper’s house. The establishment of the lighthouse dates back to 1787 when George Washington directed masons to built the structure using a $1,500 fund he had established. Whale oil lamps were originally used to illuminate the light which was first lit in 1791. The 80-foot tall lighthouse has been updated and restored many times over the years, but little has changed structurally. It is truly a magical structure to see in person.

Ram Island Ledge Light

  • Location: Cape Elizabeth (Casco Bay)
  • Coordinates: 43.6315°N 70.1874°W
  • Year First Lit: 1905
  • Activity: Active
  • Focal Height: 77 ft (23 m)
  • Location: Here

Ram Island Ledge Light is a stunning lighthouse located in Casco Bay. The lighthouse marks the northern end of the main channel leading into the harbor of Portland, Maine. In the early 1900s, many shipping boats ran aground on the ledge which prompted the United States Congress to gather funds to build a lighthouse. Construction began in 1903 and the lighthouse was completed in 1905. Ram Island Ledge Light stands 72 feet tall and is made of granite blocks.

Fun Fact: Ram Island Ledge Light is a twin of the Graves Light located off Boston!

Spring Point Ledge Light

  • Location: South Portland
  • Coordinates: 43.6521°N 70.2239°W
  • Year First Lit: 1897
  • Activity: Active
  • Focal Height: 54 ft (16 m)
  • Location: Here

Spring Point Ledge Light is a beautiful sparkplug lighthouse located in South Portland, Maine. The lighthouse was constructed in 1897 after many companies ran aground on Spring Point Ledge. The lighthouse has been updated over the years and in 1951 a 900-foot breakwater was made from nearly 50,000 tons of granite to connect the lighthouse to the mainland. Today, visitors are able to view the lighthouse up-close because of the breakwater. Don’t miss out on seeing this lighthouse!

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