Lighthouses dot the entire east coast, from the northern tip of Maine south to Florida. Lighthouses, typically built in remote locations, are extraordinarily beautiful beacons, and serve as an important reminder of our history. In Rhode Island, these lighted beacons have been guiding ships around the notoriously rocky shoreline since the 1800’s. There are more than a dozen beautiful lighthouses in the Newport area, each with its own story. Book your stay at our Rhode Island Bed and Breakfast this summer, and tour these incredible, historic destinations.
Rhode Island Lighthouses
Many people plan entire trips to New England around visiting lighthouses. Not only are they beautiful objects to take photos of, but they serve as an important historic relic of days gone by. At each lighthouse, there’s a story worth hearing. If you’re short on time, enjoy a Save the Bay Lighthouse Cruise, or travel with Rhode Island Bay Cruises to see these majestic buildings. If you choose to discover each on their own, here is a list of Newport’s most popular lighthouses.
- The Castle Hill Lighthouse, one of the most photographed in the area, stands 34 feet over the coastline it guards. The lighthouse was built in 1890, and once featured a 1300-pound fog bell. Beyond guiding ships through Narragansett Bay, the Castle Hill Lighthouse has also served as the starting/ending point for many yacht races over the years. It also happens to be an incredible place to watch the sun sink below the horizon.
- Built in 1870, the Rose Island Lighthouse was once a beacon for ships entering Narragansett Bay. It fell into disrepair in the 1970’s, but has since been restored. It’s only accessible by boat, and is now a historic living museum. True lighthouse lovers can stay overnight in one of the museum rooms or barracks, or become a keeper for the night/week in the second floor apartment.
- The Beavertail Lighthouse & Museum, located on Conanicut Island, is a beautiful place to enjoy exceptional views of Narragansett Bay. It was built in 1753, and is the third oldest lighthouse in America. Here, you’ll find an incredible museum filled with historic artifacts.
- The Dutch Island Lighthouse, built in 1870, is located on a rocky island in Narragansett Bay. It was almost completely destroyed by a fire in 1923 and later abandoned. In 2007, a solar charged light and historic preservation brought this beacon back to life. It’s not open to the public, but can be seen and appreciated from the water.
- The Newport Harbor Lighthouse (Goat Island Light) is located on Goat Island. Though the original lighthouse has moved, this was the first lighted beacon established in the historic deepwater harbor of Newport. This lighthouse’s green light gives it an unusual appearance at night, and was built in 1842.
- The Prudence Island Lighthouse was actually originally on Goat Island, where the Newport Harbor Lighthouse now stands. It was built in 1823, and moved to its current location in 1851.
- The original Sakonnet Point Light, which was built in 1884, was destroyed during a hurricane in 1954. It wasn’t restored until 1997, and can be seen from the beach at Sakonnet Point or the Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge in Middletown.
Visiting any one of these lighthouses is an incredible experience, and one that brings Newport’s historic roots into focus. Come stay at our luxury Newport Bed and Breakfast this summer, and get an up-close glimpse of this history for yourself.