6 Instagrammable lighthouses in South Africa

Posted on 20 June 2024 By Jordyn Johnson

There’s something strangely alluring about a lighthouse: the way they stoically stand beside the ocean and guide ships to shore.

Granted, I’ve visited a few lighthouses that weren’t anything to write home about, but some make for an incredible photo subject and a great reward at the end of a walking trail.

1. Umhlanga Lighthouse

Picture: Unsplash

I would dare to say that the Umhlanga lighthouse is an Umhlanga icon. It was built in 1954, took four days and 19 hours to construct, and cost R23 838. There has never been a ‘lighthouse keeper,’ and the Oyster Box Hotel has been its custodian.

It stands proudly along the Umhlanga promenade, adding to the blue sky and beachy atmosphere.

2. Port Shepstone Lighthouse

lighthouses south africa

The Port Shepstone Lighthouse is a prominent landmark of the town. The first lighthouse was in operation from 1895 until 1905. It was replaced by an 8-meter tall circular cast iron tower at the mouth of the Umzimkulu River, which is the lighthouse you can visit today.

White and black chequers make this lighthouse unique and make for a fantastic photo.

3. Cape Recife Lighthouse

Picture: Unsplash

This lighthouse is situated by Algoa Bay’s southern entrance in Cape Recife Nature Reserve. It is one of South Africa’s oldest lighthouses and was first lit in 1851. It was built to warn sailors of the treacherous Thunderbolt Reef and Roman Rock that claimed many ships.

Although the lighthouse is not open for entry, it is visible from various reserve points.

4. Seal Point Lighthouse

lighthouses south africa

Seal Point Lighthouse sits on a rock point just outside of Cape St Francis. It was built and lit in 1878 to assist ships navigating the Agulhas Bank, a hazardous shallow area that caused several shipwrecks.

You can stay in accommodation attached to the lighthouse if you feel like visiting this iconic landmark.

5. Cape Hangklip Lighthouse

lighthouses south africa

You must be ready for a little walk if you visit this lighthouse. It’s situated on the Hangklip headland and looks over the Atlantic Ocean. The False Bay maritime route offered navigational challenges that called for a lighthouse, which was built and lit in 1960.

The lighthouse is not open to the public, but the surrounding area is accessible, and views of the lighthouse and ocean are beautiful.

6. Milnerton Lighthouse

lighthouses south africa

The Milnerton Lighthouse on the shores of Table Bay in Cape Town offers a background of majestic views of the Atlantic Ocean and Table Mountain. The original Milnerton Lighthouse was constructed in 1824, which makes it one of the oldest lighthouses in South Africa. The renovated structure was first lit in 1960.
When viewing the lighthouse, the surrounding areas are perfect for leisurely strolls.

Pictures: Alamy

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