Lighthouses of Spain: Ceuta
A Spanish city on the north coast of Africa, Ceuta is in the
north of Morocco, directly opposite Gibraltar. The city was
occupied by Portugal in 1415, but it has been under Spanish control
since Portugal and Spain separated in 1640. Ceuta was
the first Western European possession
on the African mainland -- and now it is one of the last.
Ceuta is governed as an autonomous city within the Kingdom
of Spain. It is accessible by frequent ferries from Algeciras on the
other side of the Strait of Gibraltar.
The word for a lighthouse is faro in Spanish, but its use
is generally restricted to the larger coastal light stations. Smaller
lighthouses are called balizas (beacons). The navigational
lights in Spain are regulated at the national level by the Comisíon
de Faros, but they are operated and maintained in Ceuta by the
port authority, the Autoridad
Portuaria de Ceuta.
ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS
World List of Lights. ES numbers are from the Spanish national
list of lights, Libro de Faros. Admiralty
numbers are from volume D of the Admiralty List of Lights &
Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 113.
- General Sources
- Libro de Faros y Señales de Niebla
- Online edition of the official Spanish light list.
- Online List
of Lights - Morocco - Strait of Gibraltar
- Photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas. This page for
Morocco also includes the lights of Ceuta.
Leuchttürme auf historischen Postkarten
- Historic postcard images posted by Klaus Huelse.
Punta Almina Light, Ceuta, May 2008
Flickr Creative Commons photo by BSD-46
- * Punta Almina
- 1855 (extensively rebuilt 1919). Active; focal plane 148 m (486
ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 16 m (52 ft) round cylindrical
masonry tower with lantern and gallery, rising from a 1-story keeper's
house. 2nd order Henry-Lepaute Fresnel lens (1919). Entire lighthouse
painted white. Fog siren (two blasts every 45 s) located 200 m (220
yd) northeast at the tip of the point. The lantern was installed
during a major renovation in 1919; it is not clear if this renovation
was a reconstruction or a repair of the original lighthouse. A photo
appears above, Javier Rivera has a good photo,
a German-language site has good photos
of the lens, Trabas has a distant view by Capt. Peter Mosselberger, Huelse has a historic postcard
view, and Bing has a satellite
view. Punta Almina is the point of land in Africa directly
opposite the Rock of Gibraltar, so this lighthouse marks the south
side of the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea from the Strait
of Gibraltar. Located at the northeastern point of the Isla de
Santa Catarina, although the island has long been connected to
the mainland by fill. Ceuta is accessible by ferry
from Algeciras on the north side of the Strait of Gibraltar. Site
open, tower closed. Operator: Autoridad
Portuaria de Ceuta. ARLHS CEU-007; ES-20620; Admiralty D2482; NGA 22840.
Information available on lost lighthouses:
Notable faux lighthouses:
- Parque Maritimo del Mediterraneo (1995). Ceuta's maritime park has a well-known faux lighthouse, designed as a replica of the Punta Almina light tower. Javier Rivera has a photo, and Bing has a satellite view.
Adjoining pages: North: Gibraltar | East: Morocco
Mediterranean Coast |
West: Morocco Atlantic Coast
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Created August 10, 2005. Checked and revised October 22, 2013.
Lighthouses: 1. Site copyright 2013 Russ Rowlett and the University of North
Carolina at Chapel Hill.