Are there any lighthouses between Bar Harbor and Portland that you can go inside? Thanks!
There is a museum at the Pemaquid Point lighthouse, which would be worth visiting even if you couldn't go inside. See http://www.lighthouseratings.com/Pemaquid/
Thanks, MicheleS. We'll put that on our list!
Our family just returned from a trip to Maine. We made the trip to Pemaquid Point and were able to go in the lighthouse there. The lighthouse is staffed by volunteers and the guide told us that currently they are open every day for tours. You can climb to the top of the lighthouse (4 people at a time). It is about 30 steps up a spiral staircase and then maybe 8 steps up a ladder. You are less than 2 feet from the lens when you are at the top. A volunteer at the top answers questions, etc. We waited in line about 15 minutes, but during the summer the lines are longer. It is definitely worth the trip!!
I'm glad you asked this question because I have also been looking for information on lighthouses that you can go inside and I am interested in seeing what the local people say.
Here are some website addresses. I hope I am allowed to put them on here.
This lists all the Maine lighthouses and gives information on whether they are open to the public. I don't know how up-to-date their information is but here is what they say about Pemaquid Point:
"Volunteers of the Friends of Pemaquid Point Lighthouse (a chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation) manage the tower only. Volunteers open the tower in season (Memorial Day to Columbus Day) to the public every day from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The tower might be closed on rainy days or if there are no volunteers available. There is no charge to climb the tower but donations are appreciated."
We plan to go there one day between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. and we hope that the tower will be open.
On the same website, look up Marshall Point Light. It says the lighthouse is not open to the public, but there is a museum in the keeper's house. I found last year's hours (weekdays and Sunday, 1:00-5:00 and Saturday 10:00-5:00) but didn't see any update for this year.
A couple of other lighthouses that are only accessible by boat have certain times when they are open:
Seguin Island Light is supposed to be open for occasional tours. The following link is part of the Maine Maritime Museum website. Look for "Visit to Seguin Island and Light." The trip is on Tuesdays - June 21st through August 30th: 4:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. and costs $52.75 for adults.
One more that is accessible by boat and is sometimes open for tours - Burnt Island Light. Go to Balmy Days Cruises website:
and click on Burnt Island Lighthouse Tour. This website states that "keeper Joseph Muise and his family acquaint you with lighthouse living as you visit their home and climb the spiral staircase into the lantern room. Learn about Maine's fisheries, flora and fauna on your picturesque hike around the 5-acre island. Enjoy 2 hours on the Island plus a 15 min. boat ride each way." It runs July 10 through September 1, Monday through Friday, and costs $22 for adults.
We really wanted to do the Burnt Island one, but it doesn't start until after our vacation.
As I said, I have no first-hand knowledge on any of these, but I just thought since I had researched the same question I would share with you some of what I had found out.
gvlmom, I was working on my reply when you posted yours. I am so glad to hear you were able to go in the Pemaquid Point lighthouse.
One more thing you might be interested in. I ordered a Maine lighthouse map & guide from Lighthouse Depot on-line. It lists all the lighthouses and gives directions to the best places to see them. It cost about $6.00 and shipping was around $6.00.
Sorry, I got started talking about lighthouses and I can't shut up! I'm sure the Maine people on here already know this, but I think it is interesting that the Pemaquid Point Lighthouse is the one depicted on the Maine coin in the U.S. series of state quarters.
We've visited many (most) lighthouses along the Maine coast. There are some beautiful ones. However, many are still operational while others are privately owned. The net is that unlike New Jersey where you can go inside and climb just about every lighthouse, the only lighthouse that we have been able to go insid in Maine is Pemaquid which has been referenced above.
There are others that you can get close too (i.e. on the grounds, into a museum in the keeper's house, etc.). Of these, a few that I could recommend are Cape Neddick (Nubble) in York Beach which is on a small island very close to shore and is beautiful; Portland Head and Cape Elizabeth both in Cape Elizabeth; Dice Head in Castine; Rockland Breakwater in Rockland; Grindle Point on Isleboro Island (take the ferry from Lincolnville, the lighthouse is at the ferry landing); Marshall Point at Point Clyde; Pemaquid, of course and Bass Harbor on Mount Desert Island.
If you are spending time in Bar Harbor, the Bar Harbor Whale Watching Company in conjunction with the National Park Service are offering guided tours of Baker Island which, I believe, include the lighthouse. That's one we are hoping to be able to do this year. They also are offering a lighthouse cruise that brings you close to five offshore lighthouses in the area around Bar Harbor. Check out their website.
If you can visit only a few lighthouses on your trip, my top five in Maine would be
Portland Head (Cape Eliz)
Quoddy Light (Lubec)
Nubble Light (York)
Bass Harbor (Acadia)
Folks have given you a good list, let me add a few more, none of which you can go inside, but all of which have accessible grounds and are worth visiting if you are a lighthouse junkie:
Owl's Head (in the greater Rockland area)
In South Portland, the Bug Light and the Spring Point LIght are both easy to get to. The Spring Point LIght has a long breakwater like the Rockland Harbor light which people like to walk
For those going all the way to Lubec, visit BOTH Quoddy Head lights. The East light is actually in Canada, in New Brunswick on Campobello Island and it's accessible only at Low Tide, which is an adventure of its own!
Finally, if you are a hardcord lighthouse junkie, you should probably also visit Lighthouse Depot on Route 1 in Wells, see http://www.lighthousedepot.com/ which bills itself as “The World’s Largest Lighthouse Gift and Collectibles Store.” If you want lighthoue puzzles, ties, doorstops, flags, birdfeeders, windchimes, etc.,etc., etc ad nauseum, this is your place!
Thanks so much for all the information! I will plot them all out on our map and see how many we can hit!