Portland Head Light
Portland Head Light
5
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
About
Although Maine’s oldest lighthouse is closed to the public, there’s plenty to do within the grounds of Fort Williams Park. Stop by the adjacent museum to learn about the lighthouse’s history and enjoy the lawns—perfect for a picnic as you watch boats entering and leaving the harbor. You can also hike one of the trails along the rocky shore or explore several ruins within the former Fort Williams, which include two batteries, a powerhouse, and a bunker. More adventurous travelers can snorkel or scuba dive at the stunning Ship Cove. – Tripadvisor
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  • Neen813
    West Fairlee, Vermont126 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Spectacular visit with scenic views
    Vast park with beautiful, scenic views and plenty of room for families and visitors to spread out. Very clean, and parking was decent (we went on a Friday morning before a holiday weekend, so I don't know how it is at other times). Port-a-potties on site that seemed maintained. There were various food trucks there and a few artisans selling their crafts. Picnic table spread about and even a few grills on premises. I highly recommend visiting and would definitely go again.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written June 2, 2023
  • Junaid
    Tucson, Arizona30 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A Fascinating Journey Back in Time
    A Light House built in 1791 with a very rich and fascinating history. Still maintained in immaculate condition with a small museum house in the building next to it. The first lens that was used is over 7 feet tall and is on display along with the later, more advance ones that would enhance the illumination from the light source multiple times. Fascinating is the word that comes to mind. A must see on a visit to Maine.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled solo
    Written June 5, 2023
  • NHjo
    Saco, Maine12,038 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Historic AND gorgeous.
    There have been thousands of photos taken of iconic Portland Head Light because it's the oldest lighthouse in Maine and a magnificent one. It was built in 1791, around the time when Fletcher Christian was on Pitcairn Island with the other Bounty mutineers and a few Tahitians. On the beautiful mid-June day that we went, there were lots of tourists taking advantage of the views, food trucks, trails, and park.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written June 11, 2023
  • LondonNefertiti
    Greater London, United Kingdom1,386 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Scenic place to spend a few hours.
    We drove here to have a walk around the coastal paths and visit this lighthouse. Great place for families to beach comb and lots of grassy areas to play ball games. Lots of car parks .
    Visited October 2022
    Written June 11, 2023
  • Bay
    Gilbert, Arizona28 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Add this to your sightseeing list!
    A beautiful sunset stop! Perfect for a picnic, taking pictures, and watching the water up on the cliffs or from the beach below. The park property caters to all types of travelers by offering a close-up view of the house, open fields, cliffs with trails down to the water, sport courts, food trucks and more. It’s dog friendly too! The lighthouse encapsulates east coast culture and is a must see!
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written June 24, 2023
  • Jaskel08
    California240 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    beautiful lighthouse
    Beautiful lighthouse. Amazing views. Can see other lighthouses. Very picturesque. It was closed, so we couldn’t go inside. It was situated at Fort Williams Park. The park has a huge green space which is perfect for picnicking, games, etc. Lots to explore. The only cost, which was minimal, was for parking. However, there is plenty of parking. Definitely worth the stop.
    Visited June 2023
    Written June 25, 2023
  • Travelers0076
    Suffolk, Virginia69 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing Views
    Absolutely beautiful park and views! This park is gorgeous and a great place to spend a couple of hours for a nice, long walk to enjoy the weather. It is free, which was surprising (had to pay for the museum if you choose to go in). My husband and girls enjoyed climbing on the rocks there and looking in the tide pools on the rocks. There are a couple of food trucks (bring cash) that were there selling lobster rolls and coffee. Be aware the trucks are really expensive even for a touristy area. The neighborhood to get to this lighthouse was absolutely gorgeous! Breathtaking houses, views, and just a beautiful area in Portland. Highly recommend if you go here to drive a little further to Cape Elizabeth to see the Two Heads Lighthouse..another beautiful view (parking is tight) and grab a lunch at the Two Heads Lobster Shack (parking close together but separate). We shared a Lobster Roll and my girls wanted the homemade strawberry rhubarb pie! Both delicious. Prices were not bad and they had lots of options but we just wanted a snack.
    Visited July 2023
    Written July 18, 2023
  • Lee L
    84 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Nice lighthouse and park
    It was a nice place to visit. Our flight was delayed so we didn't get there until after the lighthouse was closed, would have loved to see it. The security guards started telling people to leave 20 minutes before closing, made the last 20 minutes of our visit rushed. Next time we will plan to make a day of it and walk the trails and bring a picnic lunch.
    Visited July 2023
    Written July 27, 2023
  • Sdjtravels
    Louisville, Kentucky80 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great for pictures!
    We visited in August during a one night stop to catch a plane. It was rainy but still a nice stop with some beautiful photographs. We enjoyed shrimp tacos and clam chowder from a good truck while there. Had it not been raining we would have stayed longer. Definitely worth going to.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written August 17, 2023
  • Christina
    Windsor, Virginia115 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Stunning!
    Portland Head Lighthouse is stunning and not to be missed! The lighthouse is inside a public park that charges to park and depending on where you park, you could experience a bit of a walk. Food trucks are available but check for hours of operation. Picnic tables are also available so bringing your own meal could be great. The space is wide open a can be windy. The lighthouse is very popular so brave for crowds. Dogs are allowed on leash. The lighthouse itself has been very well maintained considering its age and its exposure to the elements. Be sure to explore the property from as many angles as you can. It is truly spectacular!
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written August 30, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

5.0
5.0 of 5 bubbles2,442 reviews
Excellent
2,006
Very good
372
Average
55
Poor
3
Terrible
6

Sophie
Boston, MA29 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021
On visiting today at about 4:00, I was really disappointed – and equally shocked – to find that while the park is open until dusk, the museum is only open until 2:00 on weekdays! I don't think they do a good job explaining that on their website at all. So all I was able to do was walk a trail along a craggy beach, which apparently is thrilling for some people, but I'm the sort of person who wants to have something to focus on and learn about when I sightsee, so in the words of the great philosopher Shania Twain: that don't impress me much.

The lighthouse itself isn't open to the public at all, which is a pity, but I'm sure there's good reason for it (money and/or safety), so it doesn't upset me. A museum that's only open four hours a day, though... I get that things are different in the late-pandemic era, but at a bare minimum they need to do a better job messaging that on their website.
Written July 16, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

janiewa
Punta Gorda, FL522 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
How wonderful that a lovely site like this is maintained by the community! The lighthouse is picture perfect in every way and the surroundings are beautifully maintained. The museum is very informative (and super reasonable at $2/person) and the gift shop has a great selection. I would definitely put this site at the top of the list for places to visit in Maine!
Written June 16, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

W2322CLjennifers
Smithfield, VA61 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021
What a fantastic lighthouse to visit! Although you cannot climb the lighthouse, there is a museum with extensive displays that is only a few dollars to see. For those of us with lighthouse passport books, you can get four stamps as there are other lighthouses within view of Portland Head Light. There is a small gift shop. And of course, the lighthouse is amazing and beautiful to photograph! There is a rocky beach to explore, and also Fort Williams is adjacent to the lighthouse. A must-see for any lighthouse hunter! Tip: Check the museum hours before you go. They closed at 2 pm the day we went.
Written July 20, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lady Gigglemug
Monrovia, CA4,326 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020 • Business
Said to be the inspiration for Longfellow’s poem The Lighthouse! I can see why, to be sure! A fantastic example of a Victorian lighthouse...and the keepers house was adorable and quaint as well. Shame it wasn’t open! Supposedly the keepers were friends of Longfellow!

I caught the lighthouse on a gloriously sunny, breezy and cool New England day! The island was peaceful yet buzzing with a few tourists, the water calm and crystal clear blue, the breeze perfect in strength and temperature! Made for a lovely little hike around the grounds!

It’s easy to find. There’s plenty of parking but you have to pay - I found out as I was leaving...the tiny little “pay station” is obscure and poorly marked so be aware. I didn’t see any widespread signs either so had no idea.

So many little trails and nooks and crannys to explore! I could’ve happily stayed all day! There was even a Mainer man in the parking lot selling his artwork!

Lots of great areas for photos...from all angles. I also stumbled upon a gelato stand and some other little buildings - closed for the season - but this would be idyllic in summer time, no doubt! Must revisit!
Written October 15, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

bill925
Madison, AL424 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2020
The lighthouse is a popular spot so best to get there early or late in the day. I would have given it five stars but there is a security guard riding around on a cart with a bull horn right before sunset telling everyone to leave. I am a professional photographer and was there on a night when a full moon was going to rise, but not able to get the shot since everyone was run out.
Written October 12, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Melanie T
New York City, NY6,366 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020 • Couples
Portland Head is supposedly the most photographed lighthouse in the country (or world?). And it was a pretty sight to see. They have a coastal walking trail. However, you can only see the lighthouse from certain angles. Parking is $2 an hour but just make sure you check opening/closing times because I believe the lot does close. We came at around 1:30 on a Monday and while the lot was pretty full, we were still able to find a spot. But of course, as with any tourist attraction, the earlier you go the better.
Written September 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Roberts69
Northampton, UK18,826 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Visited Portland Head Lighthouse in Feb 2020 when there was snow all around so we had the Fort Williams Park and the lighthouse all to ourselves. This really is a very picturesque lighthouse and it is also the oldest lighthouse in Maine. Construction began in 1787 at the directive of George Washington, and was completed on 10th January 1791. In those days whale oil lamps were used for illumination. Today the light station is automated, and the tower, beacon, and foghorn are maintained by the US Coast Guard. The former lighthouse keepers' house is a maritime museum but this was not open when we were there. This historic lighthouse is definitely worth a visit and looked particularly beautiful in the snow, even if rather cold.
Written January 31, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Aud E
Grafton, MA558 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2020
We arrived the Portland Head Light and were greeted by a great staff member who advised us of how to traverse the park, what directions to look in for all the noteworthy sights on their cliff walk. He was spot on (I think his name was Tony) and we really enjoyed our time touring the park. While we were there, we also had the additional sights of the leftover surf from Hurricane Teddy, heading to Nova Scotia. Nice park to visit and easy cliff walk with scenic ocean views.
Written September 27, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ThomasTCat
St. Louis, MO749 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021
We now know why this is the most photographed lighthouse in the country. The craggy coastline in front of the lighthouse and the picturesque lighthouse itself is so beautiful. It began operation in 1791 and was authorized by President George Washington, so it is very historic. You have to pay for parking and rest rooms are port-a-potties, but this is a must see sight. The trolley tour stops here so we went back a second time and during that visit there were military men in full uniform standing at attention at the top of the lighthouse as a flyover of six military planes passed overhead. What an amazing sight! Beautiful view of Casco Bay, it is located in Fort Williams Park and it has a museum and walking paths. This is definitely Maine at its best!
Written September 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

gladysbarros66
Connecticut295 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020 • Family
The Portland Head Light was such an incredible sight the closer you walked towards it. The light was shining bright in the mist. Every visitor was respectful of one another and wore their masks. The ground were well kept. It was a nice adventure for the last weekend of summer vacation.
Written September 2, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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