Lighthouses of China: Southern Zhejiang (Wenzhou)

The Chinese province of Zhejiang (formerly spelled Chekiang) occupies the central coast of the country, south of Shanghai and north of the Formosa Strait. The province faces east on the East China Sea. The coastline is hilly and irregular, with more than 3000 islands of all sizes offshore.

This page lists lighthouses in southern Zhejiang Province, including the important port of Wenzhou and the coastline south to the border of Fujian province. This area did not attract much foreign interest during the colonial period. Although Wenzhou was a treaty port that shipped tea to Europe, the European powers built very few lighthouses in the area. As a result, nearly all the lights listed are of recent origin and modern design.

Lighthouses in China are maintained by the PRC Maritime Safety Administration. The administration is organized in four regional administrations, with district offices in the major ports. All the lights on this page are maintained by the Wenzhou MSA office, which is part of the Shanghai Region. The Chinese word for a lighthouse is dēngtǎ (灯塔). Jiao or chiao is a cape, dao, tao, yu, or hsu is an island, wan is a bay, and kang or gang is a harbor. Due to competing systems for transliterating Chinese into Latin characters, there are always several possible spellings for the names of places in China.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. CN numbers are the serial numbers used by the Shanghai regional office of MSA. Admiralty numbers are from volume F of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
Navigation Mark Search
This page searches a long light list for all of China posted by the Shanghai MSA office. Enter a range of CN numbers in the lower pair of search boxes.
China AMS Topographic Maps
A fine collection of U.S. Army Map Service maps of China, in English, posted by the University of Texas Library.

Qitou Light
Qitou (Wenzhou Point) Light, Wenzhou
PRC MSA Shanghai Region photo

Northern Dongtou County (Damendao Area) Lighthouses
Note: Dongtou County includes a ragged archipelago of islands lying across the approaches to the port of Wenzhou.
Beipanshan Yu (3)
1998 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 62 m (203 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 9 m (30 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. MSA's photo is at right, and Bing has a satellite view. Located on a small island about 13 km (8 mi) south of Yuhuandao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2698; Admiralty F3660.8; NGA 19018.
Nanpanshan Yu
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21.5 m (71 ft); white flash every 5 s. 8.5 m (28 ft) round white concrete tower. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located at the southwest end of an island about 1.8 km (1.1 mi) southwest of the Beipanshan Yu light. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2698.5.
Hengcheshan (Hengche Shan, Heng-chi Shan) (3)
1997 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 66 m (217 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. Google has a satellite view. Located on an island off the southwestern tip of Yuhuandao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2701; Admiralty F3661.1.
Dongtou (Dong Tou, Damen Dao East Point) (3)
1996 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 39 m (128 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. Google has a satellite view. Damendao is the largest island in Wenzhou Bay, about 11 km (5.5 mi) long; since it is inhabited the lighthouse may be accessible. Located at the eastern tip of Damendao. Site status unknown. CN-2702; Admiralty F3661; NGA 19068.
Xiaowuxingyu
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (62 ft); white flash every 3 s. 7.5 m (25 ft) round concrete tower, painted with red and white horizontal bands. No photo available, but Bing has a distant satellite view. Located on a small island about 5 km (3 mi) north of Damendao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2718.
Xiawuxianzuitou (Huangda Zui)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 12.5 m (41 ft) round concrete tower with gallery. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on the southwestern tip of Damendao. Site status unknown. CN-2729; Admiralty F3661.5; NGA 19072.
Beiyuanyu (Beiyuan Yu, Yuan Yu) (3)
2001 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 44 m (144 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. 13 m (43 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. NGA describes a 12 m (39 ft) round conical stone tower, presumably the 1976 lighthouse. Google has a satellite view. This lighthouse marks a dangerous reef at the start of the direct approach to Wenzhou from the east. Located on a small island about 7 km (4 mi) southeast of the inhabited island of Luxi Dao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2717; Admiralty F3660.4; NGA 19076.

Beipanshan Yu Light
PRC MSA Shanghai Region photo

Ou Estuary (Wenzhou Harbor) Lighthouses
Note: Wenzhou is a major port on the estuary of the Ou River (Oujiang). During the colonial era it was a treaty port, open to Westerners, but it never had any substantial Western settlement. During World War II it was one of the few ports on the central Chinese coast not captured by Japanese forces.
Qitou (Wenzhou Point) (2)
2004 (station establishment date unknown). Active; focal plane 20 m (66 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 13 m (43 ft) round fluted cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. MSA's photo is at the top of this page, and Google has a satellite view. The MSA page also has a photo of the original light, mounted on a short domed tower. This tower was probably at a much higher location than the present light; we need information on its history. Located on a promontory on the north side of the entrance to the Ou estuary leading to Wenzhou harbor. Site status unknown, possibly accessible. CN-2734; Admiralty F3662; NGA 19020.
Cangxia
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 8.5 m (28 ft) round white concrete tower. No photo available, but Gogle has a satellite view. Located on the north side of the estuary opposite the west end of Wenzhoudao, an island in the mouth of the Oujiang. Site status unknown. CN-2736; Admiralty F3662.4; NGA 19048.
* Matishan (Mati Shan) (2)
2002 (station establishment date unknown). Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); white flash every 3 s. 11 m (36 ft) hexagonal cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with ceramic tiles colored in red and white horizontal bands. Google has an indistinct satellite view. The lighthouse marks a narrow section in the approach to Wenzhou. Located on the north side of the estuary opposite Qitutu island. This site appears to be accessible by a road along the shore. Site open, tower closed. CN-2740; Admiralty F3662.7; NGA 19066.

Matishan Light, Wenzhou
PRC Maritime Safety Administration Shanghai Region photo
Xiangyan (2)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical unpainted white concrete tower with gallery, mounted on a round, stepped concrete pier. A photo is available, a second photo also shows the Jiangxinyu pagodas, and Google has a satellite view. The original conical tower is seen on Shanghai MSA's page. Located at the end of a shoal off the southeastern tip of Jiangxin island in Wenzhou. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. CN-2777; Admiralty F3663.5; NGA 19064.
* [Jiangxinyu (Jiangxin Yu) East Pagoda]
869 AD. Inactive. Hexagonal stone pagoda, now partially in ruins. Steve Byrne's photo is at right, another photo is available, there's a photo of both Jiangxinyu pagodas, and Google has a satellite view. According to Wenzhou County annals, this Tang Dynasty pagoda was built as a daybeacon for sailors arriving in Wenzhou. In 1981, both Jiangxinyu pagodas were listed as National Cultural Heritage sites. Located at the eastern end of Jiangxin island in Wenzhou. Transportation to the island is available. Site open, tower closed.
* [Jiangxinyu (Jiangxin Yu) East Pagoda]
969 AD. Inactive. Hexagonal stone pagoda, in good condition, with five balconies and a pyramidal roof. Guo Tian-shun has a photo, there's a photo of both Jiangxinyu pagodas, and Google has a satellite view. The second pagoda, built exactly 100 years after the first, provided sailors with a range line in their approach to Wenzhou. In 1981, both Jiangxinyu pagodas were listed as National Cultural Heritage sites. Located at the eastern end of Jiangxin island in Wenzhou. Transportation to the island is available. Site open, tower closed.
Yanmenshan (Yanmen Shan) (2)
2002 (station establishment date unknown). Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 11 m (36 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. Google has a satellite view. Located at the toe of rocky promontory projecting into the south (here, really the west) side of the estuary a few miles northwest of Wenzhou. Site status unknown, possibly accessible. CN-2779.14; Admiralty F3663.9.
Longwan Paotai (Longwan Fort)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); four white flashes every 10 s. 6 m (20 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with a domed top; the light is mounted atop the dome. Lighthouse painted white. Bing has a satellite view. This lighthouse is a sibling of the original Qitou lighthouse. It is built below the historic Yongchang fort, which protected Wenzhou against attack by pirates. Located on a promontory on the south side of the estuary at Longwan. Site status unknown, possibly accessible. CN-2738; Admiralty F3662.6; NGA 19052.
Jiangxinyu East Pagoda
Jiangxinyu East Pagoda, January 2010
Flickr photo copyright Steve Byrne; used by permission

Southern Dongtou County Lighthouses
Hutouyu (Hutou Yu)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 103 m (338 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 8.5 m (28 ft) square pyramidal white concrete tower. No photo available; Google has a distant satellite view. This important light is curiously missing from the Shanghai MSA light list. Located on an island well out into the East China Sea, about 7 km (4.5 mi) east of Dongtoudao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty F3659; NGA 19084.
Dasanpandao (Dasanpan Dao, Tasanpang Shan) (2)
2003 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 53 m (174 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with ceramic tiles colored white with red trim. Google has a satellite view. NGA lists the original light, a small pyramidal structure. Dasanpandao is a small but inhabited island in the Dongtou Channel, one of the approaches to Wenzhou. Located on the highest point of the island. Site status unknown, but probably accessible. CN-2782; Admiralty F3660.2; NGA 19080.
Liyan (Li Yu, Zhuangyuanao Shan) (2)
2002 (station established 1954). Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); white flash every 4 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with ceramic tiles colored white with red trim. MSA's photo is at right, and Google has a satellite view. Zhuangyuanao is an inhabited island on the north side of the Dongtou Channel. The light guides vessels approaching bridges that connect Zhuangyuanao to the neighboring island of Qianmenshan to the west. Located off the western tip of the island. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. CN-2784; Admiralty F3657.82.
Luantouyu (Luantou Yu)
2007. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); white flash every 3 s. 8 m (26 ft) round concrete tower, painted with red and white horizontal bands. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a small island in the channel between Dongtoudao and Dasanpandao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2780.6; Admiralty F3660.1.
Meihuajiao (Meihua Jiao) (2)
1997 (station established 1954). Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); white flash every 4 s. 12.5 m (41 ft) hexagonal cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with ceramic tiles colored black. Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on a reef off the western tip of Dongtoudao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2786; Admiralty F3657.7.
Beicedao (Beice Dao, Beitse Shan) (2)
1993 (station established 1963). Active; focal plane 28 m (92 ft); white flash every 4 s. 8.5 m (28 ft) hexagonal cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. Google has a satellite view. Located atop Beicedao, northernmost of the Tse Islands, a small group south of Dongtoudao. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2792; Admiralty F3657.5.
Liyan Light
Liyan Light, Dongtou
PRC Maritime Safety Administration Shanghai Region photo
Longyanjiao (Longanjiao) (2)
1960 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); four white flashes every 12 s. 12.5 m (41 ft) hexagonal cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. Clouds obscure Google's satellite view. Located on a dangerous reef on the approach to Wenzhou from the southeast, about 10 km (6 mi) southwest of Niyushan. Site status unknown. CN-2793; Admiralty F3657.75.

Rui'an City: Beiji Islands Lighthouses
Note: The Beiji Islands extend in a ragged line eastward from near the city of Rui'an, which administers the islands. The largest island, Beijishan, is near the end of the archipelago.
Beijishan (Beijidao, Peichi Shan)
1990. Active; focal plane 135 m (443 ft); three white flashes every 20 s. 20 m (66 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and a round control center, rising from a U-shaped 1-story concrete crew building and signal station. Tower covered with red ceramic tiles; the attached building is white with red trim and a red roof. An MSA photo is at right, and Google has a good satellite view. Beijishan is the largest and northernmost of the Beiji Islands, an isolated group about 50 km (30 mi) southeast of Wenzhou. Located at the highest point of the island. Site status unknown. ARLHS PRC-007; CN-2794.1; Admiralty F3650; NGA 19086.
Tongqianjiao (Tongqian Jiao)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); two white flashes every 5 s. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower, painted black with a red horizontal band. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located at the west end of a long reef about 5 km (3 mi) northwest of the Beijanshan lighthouse. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty F3652.
Dongguayu (Donggua Yu, Dongqua Hsu) (2)
1995 (station established 1908). Active; focal plane 79 m (259 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 13 m (43 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles; lantern roof painted red. Google has a satellite view. The original lighthouse, a 7.5 m (25 ft) cast iron tower, was repaired after being damaged during World War II. It is not known if the tower was salvaged for display. It's also not clear why NGA does not list this historic light station. Located on a small island about 13 km (8 mi) west of Beijishan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2796; Admiralty F3655.
Beijishan Light
Beijishan Light, Rui'an
PRC Maritime Safety Administration photo
Beilongshan (Beilong Shan, Peilung Shan) (2)
2001 (station established 1970). Active; focal plane 37 m (121 ft); white flash every 6 s. 10 m (33 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. Google has a very distant satellite view. Beilongshan is an inhabited island about 20 km (13 mi) off the mainland coast and a similar distant west of Beijishan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown, but possibly accessible. CN-2798; Admiralty F3648.8; NGA 19085.5.
Lizhishan (Lizhi Shan) (2)
1978 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 89 m (292 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, painted with red and white horizontal bands. Google has a very distant satellite view. Located atop a small island about 7 km (4.5 mi) west northwest of Beilongshan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2799; Admiralty F3648.6; NGA 19085.

Pingyang County: Nanji Islands Lighthouses
Note: The Nanji Islands are a compact group clustered around the largest island, Nanjishan, about 20 km (13 mi) southwest of Beijishan. The islands are administered as part of Pingyang County.
Daoitao (Daoitao Shan)
2007(?). Active; focal plane 25 m (82 ft); white flash every 8 s. 11 m (36 ft) round concrete tower, colored with red and white horizontal bands. No photo available, and the lighthouse is apparently too new to appear in Google's satellite view. Located on a small island on the northeast corner of the Nanji Islands. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty F3649.8.
Longzuitou (Longzui Tou) (2)
1964 (station established 1958). Active; focal plane 71 m (233 ft); white flash every 4 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, painted white. Google has a satellite view. Located on an islet off the northwest coast of Nanjishan, an inhabited island in the East China Sea about 35 km (22 mi) off the coast of southern Zhejiang. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2800.
Pingyu (Ping Yu, Nanji Shan, Nan-chi Shan, Nanji Liedao) (3)
1998 (station established 1970). Active; focal plane 62 m (203 ft); two white flashes every 12 s. 12 m (39 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. An external stairway winds wround the lower half of the tower. Google has a very distant satellite view. Located on an islet about 5 km (3 mi) off the south coast of Nanji Shan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2802; Admiralty F3649; NGA 19086.5.
Shangma'andao (Shangma'an Dao, Turret Island) (2)
1970 (station established 1962). Active; focal plane 92 m (310 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical stone tower with gallery, painted with black and white horizontal bands. Google has a very distant satellite view. Located on an isolated high island about 8 km (5 mi) west of Nanjishan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2805; Admiralty F3649.3; NGA 19086.3.

Pingyang County: Longgangzhen Area Lighthouses
Shangtouyu
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 64 m (210 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located atop a small island about 12 km (7.5 mi) off the harbor of Longgangzhen. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2815.
Shizikou
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 26 m (85 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is white. No photo available, but Google has a distant satellite view. Located atop a steep bluff on the north side of the entrance to Longgangzhen. Site status unknown. CN-2816.
* Pingyang Zui (Pingyang Tsui, Cape Pingyang) (3)
1992 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 66 m (217 ft); white flash every 5 s. 10 m (33 ft) hexagonal cylindrical stone tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. MSA's photo is at right, and Bing has a satellite view. This lighthouse is on the mainland and accessible by road. Located on the cape, about 8 km (5 mi) northeast of Jinxiang. Site open, tower closed. CN-2825; Admiralty F3648.35.

Cangnan County Lighthouses
Jiaobeidao (Jiaobei Dao) (2)
1989 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 32 m (105 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical stone tower with gallery, painted black. Bing has a satellite view. Located on an isolated pinnacle in the entrance to Dayu Bay, about 10 km (6 mi) east of Zhongdun. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2827; Admiralty F3648.28.
Dingcaoyu (Dingcao Yu, Qao Yu, Tsao Hsu, Toe Point) (2)
1987 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 58 m (190 ft); white flash every 3 s. 9 m (30 ft) round stone tower with gallery, painted white. A 1-story equipment room is adjacent to the lighthouse. Google has a very distant satellite view. Located at the eastern tip of a small island just off the mainland coast southeast of Mazhan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2828; Admiralty F3648.25.
Pingyang Zui Light
Pingyang Zui Light, Longgangzhen, May 1997
PRC MSA Shanghai Region photo
Wangjiao (Wang Jiao) (2)
1989 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 22 m (72 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. 13 m (43 ft) 2-stage round cylindrical stone tower with gallery, covered with white ceramic tiles. Google has only a blurry satellite view. Located on a reef off the southeastern tip of the island of Loyingshan, a few miles north of the Fujian border. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. CN-2831; Admiralty F3648.18.
Nanguandao (Nanguan Dao, Nankuanshan) (2)
1990 (station established 1955). Active; focal plane 67 m (220 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. 10 m (33 ft) 12-sided stone (?) tower with gallery, painted with black and white horizontal bands. Google has a satellite view. Nanguandao is an inhabited island in the mouth of the Kuanjiang river, at the border between Zhejiang and Fujian. Site status unknown, possibly accessible. CN-2833; Admiralty F3648.15.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Central Zhejiang | South: Ningde, Fujian

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Posted June 9, 2008. Checked and revised July 11, 2013. Lighthouses: 36. Site copyright 2013 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.