Lighthouses of Germany: Borkum to Wilhelmshaven

Germany has two coastlines, one facing northwest on the North Sea and the other facing northeast on the Baltic Sea. This page lists lighthouses of the westernmost section of the North Sea coast, including East Frisia and the Jade estuary leading to the port of Wilhelmshaven. This short section of the coast, all of it in the state of Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), has nearly 30 lighthouses.

Interest in lighthouses is strong in Germany, and most of the towers are in good condition. A federal law provides blanket protection to historic lighthouses. There is concern, however, that many of the lights may be deactivated in the coming years as navigators depend less and less on them.

In German, a lighthouse is a Leuchtturm ("light tower"), plural Leuchttürme. The front light of a range is the Unterfeuer and the rear light is the Oberfeuer. There are many modern range lighthouses, and most of these towers are crowned by a topmark: a large, distinctive structure that serves to mark the range clearly in the daytime. Some topmarks are conical, others are funnel-shaped, and some consist of one or more gallery-like rings around the tower.

Lighthouses in Germany are operated by the regional harbor authority, called the WSA (Wasser- und Schifffahrtsamt). This page includes the jurisdictions of two WSA's: WSA Emden and WSA Wilhelmshaven. The WSA's are linked to and regulated by a federal agency, the Wasser- und Schifffahrtsverwaltung des Bundes (WSV).

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volume B of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from NGA Publication 114.

General Sources
Leuchtturm-Atlas
A large site with excellent photos and information on nearly all German lighthouses, maintained by Frank and Birgit Toussaint.
Online List of Lights - Germany North Sea
Photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas.
Leuchttürme.net - Ems, Ostfriesland
Outstanding photos by Malte Werning.
Leuchtturmseiten von Anke und Jens
Good photos and and brief accounts for many of the lighthouses, in English.
Deutsche Leuchttürme/Feuerschiffe
Photos posted by Klause Huelse.
Deutsche Leuchttürme auf historischen Postkarten
Historic postcard images, also posted by Klaus Huelse.
Lighthouses in Lower Saxony
Photos by various photographers available from Wikimedia.
World of Lighthouses - Germany
Photos by various photographers available from Lightphotos.net.
Lighthouse information from WSA web sites:
Emden | Wilhelmshaven
Lighthouses in Germany
Aerial photos posted by Marinas.com.
Interessengemeinschaft Seezeichen e.V.
Germany's national lighthouse preservation organization.
Lightships in Germany
An outstanding site on German lightships, maintained by Iris Klempau.


Borkum Großer Light, Borkum, June 2004
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Klaus Friese

Leer District Lighthouses

Borkum Lighthouses
Note: Westernmost of the East Frisian Islands, Borkum is a popular seaside spa and resort, accessible by air or by ferry from Emden. The island has a permanent population of about 5500 and is administered as part of the Leer District.
Emshörn
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); yellow flash every 4 s. Round tower supporting a large round structure. Lighthouse painted yellow with a black base. Trabas has Rainer Arndt's photo, a 1985 aerial photo is available, and Bing has a satellite view. Located in the Ems estuary about 4 km (2.5 mi) off Eemshaven, Netherlands. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty B0982.
Fischerbalje
1960. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); two white flashes every 16 s. 16 m (52 ft) round cylindrical lantern, gallery, and watch room supported by tripod pilings. Lantern and watch room painted red with a white band at the base of the watch room. Leuchtturm-Atlas also has a good photo, Trabas has a great closeup by Klaus Potschien, and Bing has a satellite view. This lighthouse replaced the former Außenrandzel lighthouse; the lens from Außenrandzel was transferred to Fischerbalje. In early 2005, Borkum officials successfully protested a WSA Emden plan to replace the lighthouse, and stated their belief it should be retained. It was, but the former sector lights were replaced by a much weaker, general-purpose white light. Located off the end of the breakwater at Reede Borkum, the ferry terminal at the south end of the island; Accessible by boat and (with caution) on foot at low tide. Site and tower closed. Operator: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-023; Admiralty B0976; NGA 10040.
Binnenrandzel
1891. Inactive since 1995. 14 m (46 ft) two-stage tower: a round tower mounted on a square pyramidal skeletal tower. Lighthouse painted red with one white horizontal band. Leuchtturm-Atlas also has a closeup photo, and Bing has a satellite view. Channel changes made this light obsolete. Located on the east side of the Ems entrance channel opposite Eemshaven in the Netherlands. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ex-Admiralty B0981.
*** Feuerschiff Borkumriff IV
1956. Decommissioned 1988. 53.7 m (176 ft) 2-masted steel lightship, light displayed from a lantern atop the foremast. Hull painted red, superstructure white; light mast painted white with a single red horizontal band. The original Fresnel lens is mounted in the lantern. This is the last traditional lightship built in Germany. The ship spent its entire career on the Borkumriff station 30 km (19 mi) northwest of the island; when it was withdrawn, on 15 July 1988, it was the last active German lightship. In 1989 it was transferred to the national park service. It is now a museum ship, and it also serves as the national park information center for Borkum Island. Klempau also has a page on the lightship, Udo Springfeld has a 2008 photo, and Google has a satellite view. Moored in the Burkanahafen, near the ferry terminal. Site open; ship open for tours daily except Mondays April through October and on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoons in the winter. Owner/site manager: Nationalpark Wattenmeer. ARLHS FED-002.
* Borkum Düne ("Kuckucksturm")
1928. Inactive since 1995. 8 m (26 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower with semicircular lantern and square gallery. Tower painted red with a white horizontal band; lantern roof is black. Leuchtturm-Atlas has a closeup, Huelse also has a good photo, and Google has a satellite view. This tower, nicknamed the "cuckoo tower," formerly carried a directional light; like the Borkum Kleiner lighthouse it was deactivated after changes in the ship channel made it obsolete. There was fear that the property would be sold, but instead an automatic weather station was installed next to the old light, and the lighthouse has been maintained for its historical value. Located a short distance east of the Borkum Kleiner lighthouse; the Anke/Jens site has a photo showing both towers. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-270.
Borkum Kleiner Light
Borkum Kleiner Light, Borkum, March 2005
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Arne Hückelheim
* Borkum (Kleiner Leuchtturm)
1891. Inactive since 2003. 27 m (89 ft) 16-sided cast iron tower with lantern and double gallery, topped by a radar antenna. Lighthouse painted with red and white horizontal bands. Arne Hückelheim's photo is above right, WSA Emden has a page with the history of the station, Werning has a fine page for the lighthouse, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. The lighthouse was built as part of a program to improve safety for ships entering the Ems; in the same year the directional light was added to the Borkum Großer tower and the Pilsum and Campen lighthouses were built (see below). The light was deactivated August 31, 2003, after changes in the ship channel made it obsolete. However, the tower is being maintained: in the fall of 2006 it was repaired and repainted. Located on the south side of the town of Borkum, at the foot of Süderstraße. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-015; Admiralty B0972; NGA 10036.
** Borkum (Alter Leuchtturm)
1817 (tower built 1576). Inactive since 1879. 45 m (148 ft) square brick tower, unpainted, attached to 1-1/2 story keeper's house. A photo is at right, Werning's page has an excellent photo, Wikimedia has several photos, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. This historic tower functioned as a daybeacon until a lantern was added in 1817. The tower was gutted by fire on 14 February 1879, leading to the construction of the Borkum Großer lighthouse. From 1895 to 1921 the tower was used as a weather and maritime traffic control station. In 1982, ownership of the old tower was transferred to the Borkum history association; after restoration it was opened to the public as a bed and breakfast and meeting venue managed by the area's Lutheran church district. The tower is popular site for weddings. Located at the end of Kirchstraße in the center of the town of Borkum. Site open, tower open (but only for an hour during the morning) on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays April through October, also on Fridays July through September, and on Saturdays November through March. Owner: Heimatverein Borkum. Site manager: Ev. Kirchenkreis Lüdenscheid-Plettenberg. ARLHS FED-024.
**** Borkum (Großer Leuchtturm, Neuer Leuchtturm)
1879 (station established 1817). Active; focal plane 63 m (207 ft); two white flashes, separated by 2.7 s, every 12 s; at 46 m (151 ft) there is also a directional light displaying continuous white, red, or green light depending on direction. 60 m (197 ft) round brick tower with a tall (3-story) octagonal base, lantern and gallery. The tower is unpainted gray-brown brick, the base is covered in brown tile; the lantern has a red dome. Klaus Friese's photo is at the top of this page, Werning has a page with great photos, Trabas has an excellent photo by Klaus Potschien, Wikimedia has photos, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a great satellite view. This robust tower is either the second or third tallest brick lighthouse in the world, comparable to the famous Cape Hatteras Light in the U.S. It is the landfall light for the Ems estuary and the port of Emden. Recently restored. Located on Strandstraße at Goethestraße near the west end of the island. Site open; tower open for climbing daily April through October and on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday afternoons November through March. Operator: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-009; Admiralty B0970; NGA 10032.

Borkum Alter Light, Borkum, August 2008
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Sicco2007

Emden Lighthouses

Note: Emden is a seaport town on the east bank of the Ems River, which is also the border between Germany and the Netherlands. The town has a population of about 50,000.
* [Emden West Mole (original lantern)]
1913. Inactive. Octagonal cast iron lantern, painted white with red trim; the roof is dark gray. This is the original lantern of the Emden West Mole Light (see below). It was relocated as the operator's station at a drawbridge carrying Friedrich-Ebert Straße over the Ems-Jade Canal in downtown Emden. A tree hides the lantern in Google's satellite view. Site open, lantern closed.
**** Lightship Deutsche Bucht (Amrumbank II)
1915. Decommissioned 1983. 52.5 m (172 ft) steel lightship with cylindrical light tower amidships, lantern, and gallery. Hull and light tower painted red, superstructure and lantern painted white. The ship bears the name of its last station Deutsche Bucht (German Bight). After deactivation the ship was donated to a preservation foundation in Emden, which restored it as a museum and restaurant. The ship also has an amateur radio transmitting station and an office of the city registrar where weddings are performed. Klempau also has a page on the lightship, a 2008 photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Moored in the Ratsdelft, a basin in Emden harbor, with several other historic vessels. Site open, ship open daily late March through October. Owner/site manager: Museums-Feuerschiff Amrumbank/Deutsche Bucht e. V. ARLHS FED-139.
Emden West Mole
1913. Active; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); continuous light, red or green depending on direction. 10 m (33 ft) octagonal cast iron tower with lantern and gallery mounted on an octagonal stone base. Tower painted bright orange-red. Werning's photo is at right, Trabas has a great closeup photo by Klaus Kern, Leuchtturm-Atlas has a fine photo, Wikimedia has a 2012 photo, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. The lighthouse was renovated in 1982, and the historic lantern was replaced. The original lantern was relocated (see above). In recent years the mole has been closed to the public, although there is a movement to reopen it for access to the lighthouse. Located at the end of the west pier at the entrance to Emden harbor. Site and tower closed; there are good views from the ferries departing for Borkum. Operator: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-081; Admiralty B1026.
* Wybelsum
1970. Active; focal plane 16 m (52 ft); continuous light, white or red depending on direction. 18 m (60 ft) round cylindrical tile-covered tower rising from an octagonal 1-story brick building and supporting an octagonal observation room. Rotating radar antenna. Trabas has a closeup photo by Ulrich Bode, Leuchtturm-Atlas also has a good photo, Wikimedia has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in a large wind farm on the north bank of the estuary about 5 km (3 mi) east of Knock and 10 km (6 mi) west of Emden. Site open, tower closed. Operator: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-268; Admiralty B1012; NGA 10056.
Emden West Mole Light
Emden West Mole Light, Emden
photo copyright Malte Werning; used by permission
* Knock (2)
1970 (station established 1888). Active; focal plane 28 m (92 ft); continuous directional light, white, red, or green depending on direction. 55 m (180 ft) harbor control tower attached to a 3-story brick building that contains the Dutch-German Vessel Traffic Control Centre Ems. The tower is a square concrete spire supporting two rooms with technical systems and topped by a round radome of the German Weather Service; the light is displayed from a square gallery-like platform halfway up the tower and between the two control rooms. Werning has a page for the lighthouse, Trabas has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. Huelse has a postcard view of the former Knock West lighthouse, located very close to this location from 1888 to 1970. Located at Knock, at a 90° bend in the Ems about 6 km (4 mi) south of Campen and 15 km (9 mi) west of Emden. Accessible by road; there is also a distant view from Delfzijl, across the estuary in the Netherlands. Site open, tower closed. Operator: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-128; Admiralty B1010; NGA 10052.

Aurich District Lighthouses

Ems Estuary Lighthouses
** Campen
1891. Active; focal plane 62 m (203 ft); directional light, showing a continuous white light along the channel line, a white flash every 5 s in a narrow arc to the right, and four white flashes every 15 s in a narrow arc to the left. 65 m (214 ft) triangular pyramidal skeletal tower with central cylinder, semicircular lantern, watch room, and double gallery. Lighthouse painted red; central cylinder is white, lantern dome green. A photo is at right, Werning has a great photo, Trabas also has a good photo, Leuchtturm-Atlas has a photo and basic data, and Google has a satellite view. This great landmark of civil engineering is Germany's tallest lighthouse and one of the tallest of its type in the world, only a little shorter than the 67 m Recalada a Bahía Blanca lighthouse in Argentina. It guides ships through the channel of the Randzelgat in the lower estuary of the Ems, projecting a narrow beam only 0.3° wide visible for 30 nautical miles (55.5 km or 34.5 mi) to the northwest. The nearby generator building houses a 1906 diesel motor in operating condition, believed to be the world's oldest operating diesel engine still at its original location. Located on the east bank of the Ems in Campen, about 17 km (11 mi) west of Emden. Site open, tower open for climbing but information is needed on the schedule. Operator: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-004; Admiralty B0983; NGA 10048.
** Pilsum
1891. Reactivated (inactive 1915-2005, now privately maintained and unofficial); light pattern unknown. 11 m (36 ft) round cylindrical cast iron tower with a conical roof. No lantern; the light was displayed through a window at the top of the tower. Lighthouse painted with red and yellow horizontal bands. Werning has a good page for the light, a fine closeup is available, and Google has a satellite view. The lighthouse was built to display a directional light and became obsolete when a shorter channel was cut south of Borkum Island. Maintained between the World Wars as a daybeacon, the lighthouse was effectively abandoned at the start of World War II and became a rusted wreck by the 1960s. In 1973 the exterior was restored and painted with its present colorful pattern (originally the lighthouse was all red, later red in the lower 2/3 and yellow above). Another restoration in 1984 included replacement of the roof and ventilator ball. A complete restoration, inside and out, was carried out in 1997-98. In early 2005, the lighthouse was reactivated with a new 60 cm (24 in) lens. Located on a dike at the eastern entrance to the Ems, about 10 km (6 mi) north of Campen. Accessible by the coastal road. Site open, tower open for tours on selected Sundays. Site manager: Diechacht Krummhörn. ARLHS FED-018.

Campen Light, Campen, March 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Gerriet

Juist Lighthouse
Note: Juist and Norderney are barrier islands east of Borkum; both islands are popular resorts accessible by ferry from Norddeich. Juist has a permanent population of about 1800, and the population of Norderney is nearly 6000.
*** Memmert (lantern on replica tower)
1939 lantern on 1992 tower. Original lighthouse inactive since 1986; the replica displays a decorative light. Approx. 14 m (45 ft) round brick tower with lantern and gallery, mounted on a square base. The tower is unpainted gray brick except for one white vertical stripe; lantern painted white with gold and blue bands (the colors of the island's flag) at the base and a gray conical roof. A winter photo is available, Claudia Hake has a 2008 photo, Wikimedia has a 2009 photo, and Bing has a satellite view. The original lighthouse was similar in appearance but square rather than round; it was built on Memmert, a small sandy island obstructing the passage between Borkum and Juist. After deactivation the lighthouse was demolished. Members of the Juister Heimatverein (Juist Historical Society) raised funds to build the replica and install the historic lantern. There is a small museum in the tower. Located on the waterfront of Juist, near the ferry terminal. Site open, tower open for climbing on summer evenings. Owner/site manager: Küstenmuseum Juist. ARLHS FED-152.

Norderney Lighthouse
*** Norderney
1874. Active; focal plane 59 m (194 ft); three white flashes, separated by 2.8 s, every 12 s. 54 m (177 ft) octagonal brick tower with lantern and gallery mounted on a tall square brick base. Tower is unpainted reddish brown brick; lantern painted black. The lantern is wrapped in screening to protect migrating birds from smashing into the glass. The original rotating 1st order Sautter, Lemonnier & Cie. Fresnel lens remains in use. A photo by Jens Pletsch is at right, Trabas has a photo by Klaus Potschien, the Leuchtturm-Atlas web site for the lighthouse includes a portfolio of photos, Wikimedia has numerous photos, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a good satellite view. This is a magnificent and well-maintained lighthouse. A thorough restoration was carried out during 2004-05; Werning has a photo taken during this project. The great lens has 24 segments, with every fourth segment darkened; it makes a complete rotation every 72 s. The light is visible for 20 nautical miles (37 km or 23 mi). Located in the center of the island of Norderney; accessible by road. Site open, tower open during the summer season. Operator: WSA Emden. ARLHS FED-025. Admiralty B1054; NGA 10072.

Norderney Light, Norderney, March 2009
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Jens Pletsch

Friesland District and Wilhelmshaven Lighthouses

Wangerooge Lighthouses
Note: Wangerooge is the easternmost barrier island of the East Frisian chain. Accessible by ferry from Harlesiel, it has a population of about 1000.
** [Westturm (replica)]
1934 (replica of 1602 building). Inactive. 56 m (184 ft) square 8-story brick building topped by three soaring spires. Wolf Brüning has a fine 2009 photo, a second photo is available, Marinas.com has aerial photos, and Google has a satellite view. The original building, 800 m (1/2 mi) to the north, was built between 1597 and 1602 and was used as a lighthouse until 1630. The light was abandoned because it did not show far enough away to be useful, but the building continued as a conspicuous and well-known daybeacon for mariners. By 1860 the eastward movement of the island had put the building in the water. It was blown up in December 1914, early in World War I. The reproduction served as a dormitory for Hitler Youth and continued in service as a youth hostel to the present. Although it has never been an official aid to navigation, it is widely recognized as one of Wangerooge's three lighthouses. Located near the southwestern corner of Wangeroode. Site and building open. Site manager: Jugendherbergen Wangerooge. ARLHS FED-253.
* Wangerooge (3) (Neuer Turm)
1969 (station established 1830). Active; focal plane 60 m (197 ft); red flash every 5 s; also continuous white, red, and green directional lights at a focal plane of 24 m (79 ft). 64 m (210 ft) round aluminum-clad concrete and steel tower with flared top, lantern, and gallery, plus a round observation and control room at the 23 m (75 ft) level. Lighthouse painted with red and white horizontal bands; lantern is white. Werning has a fine photo, the Leuchtturm-Atlas site for the lighthouse includes a portfolio of photos, Trabas also has a good photo by Manfred Schüler, Marinas.com has aerial photos, and Google has a satellite view. This huge lighthouse was built as a landfall light for shipping, especially supertankers, arriving in Wilhelmshaven. It also serves as the traffic control center for WSA Wilhelmshaven. Located near the west end of Wangerooge. Site open, tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-251; Admiralty B1112; NGA 10192.
**** Wangerooge (2) (Alter Turm)
1856 (station established 1830). Inactive since 1969. 39 m (128 ft) round stone tower clad in metal (steel?) plates, rising from a round 1-story base and topped by a 3-story extension with lantern and gallery. Tower painted red, extension white, lantern black with a green (copper) conical roof. A photo is at right, Werning has a good photo, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. This lighthouse replaced a 23 m (75 ft) stone tower that stood near the site of the 1969 lighthouse. The lighthouse was only 30 m (98 ft) tall, with a small conventional lantern, when it was first built. The 3-story extension with its large lantern was added in 1927. Since 1969 the tower has housed a local history museum. Located near the center of the island about 6 km (4 mi) east of the Neuer Turm. Site open, museum open daily, tower open for climbing during museum hours. Owner: Municipality of Wangerooge. Site manager: Inselmuseum Wangerooge. ARLHS FED-252.
Wangerooge Alter Light
Wangerooge Alter Light, Wangerooge, July 2012
Flickr Creative Commons photo by sanny1175

West Side Jade Lighthouses
Note: The Jade Bight or Jade Bay is an inlet of the North Sea leading to the port of Wilhelmshaven. Lighthouses in the Wesermarsch District on the east side of the Jade are described on the Bremen page.
Mellumplate
1946. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft); white directional light, continuous along the line of the channel. Vessels slightly south of the channel see a short and long flash every 7.5 s, and those further south see a single flash every 4s. Vessels slightly north of the channel see a long and a short flash every 7.5 s, and those further north see four white flashes every 15 s. 32 m (105 ft) square cylindrical tower with gallery, topped by a helipad, mounted on a round caisson. Lighthouse painted red with one white horizontal band. WSA Wilhelmshaven has a page for the lighthouse, Werning has a fine photo, Trabas has an excellent closeup photo by Manfred Schüler, Wikimedia has a portfolio of photos, and Bing has a satellite view. This tower was actually completed in 1942, and for the rest of World War II it supported an antiaircraft battery. British occupying forces activated the lighthouse at the end of the war. The lighthouse guides ships past the Mellumplate (Mellum Flats), a broad shallow area in the mouth of the Jade. In 2007 it was renovated with powerful new optics. Located about 6 km (4 mi) east of Schillig. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-017; Admiralty B1122; NGA 10316.
Minsener Oog Buhne A
1939. Inactive since 1998. 17 m (56 ft) square cylindrical tower with lantern on a square concrete base; tower unpainted, lantern painted red. Werning has a recent photo, and Google has a satellite view. Gravely endangered: undermined by the sea, this lighthouse has an increasing tilt to seaward, and it is likely to collapse in the near future. Built at the end of a breakwater at Minsener Oog, about 10 km (6 mi) northeast of Schillig. Most of the breakwater is gone or underwater, leaving the lighthouse at sea. Note: a buhne is a groin or breakwater. Located about 3 km (2 mi) east of the eastern tip of Wangerooge. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed (the island is restricted as a bird sanctuary). Site manager: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-154; ex-Admiralty B1124.
Minsener Oog Buhne C
1976. Inactive since 1998. 53 m (174 ft) tower: round cylindrical concrete tower topped by a tall skeletal communications tower, with radar equipment on a large square platform at about the 22 m (72 ft) level; the light was displayed from a post on a small landing just above this platform. Tower painted with black and white horizontal bands. Werning has a good page for the lighthouse, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the east side of the sandbank known as Minsener Oog, marking the west side of the entrance to the Jade. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed (the island is restricted as a bird sanctuary). Site manager: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-013; ex-Admiralty B1128.
* Schillig Unterfeuer (2)
1961 (station established 1916). Inactive since 1998. 16 m (52 ft) steel tripod tower with lantern and gallery, painted black. The range was discontinued in 1987, and the tower then carried a directional light until 1998. The range towers continue to be maintained as a day range. Werning's photo is at right, Leuchtturm-Atlas has a good view of the range as seen from the Jade, and Bing has a satellite view. Huelse has a postcard view of the original light. Located just behind the beach on the west bank of the Jade in Schillig. Site open, tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. Site manager: unknown. ARLHS FED-213; ex-Admiralty B1132.
* Schillig Oberfeuer
1961. Inactive since 1987. Approx. 25 m (82 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, painted yellow. The tower continues to carry communications antennas. WSA Wilhelmshaven has a page for the tower, Wikimedia has a photo, Marinas.com has aerial photos, and Bing has a satellite view. The original light, on a tall mast, is seen in one of Huelse's postcard views, and another view shows the present tower before the communications gear was added. Located approx. 2 km (1.2 mi) west of Schillig. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-215; ex-Admiralty B1132.1.

Schillig Unterfeuer, Schillig
photo copyright Malte Werning; used by permission
Hooksielplate
1976. Inactive since 1998. 55 m (180 ft) structure: round cylindrical concrete tower with a square platform, equipment room, and gallery, topped by a tall communications tower. Tower painted with red and white horizontal bands. The light was displayed from the platform at the 25 m (82 ft) level. The lighthouse continues in use as a radar tower. A photo is at right, and Leuchtturm-Atlas also has a good photo. Located in the Jade about 8 km (5 mi) southeast of Schillig. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-114; ex-Admiralty B1133.

Wilhelmshaven Lighthouses
Note: Wilhelmshaven (William's Harbor) is named for Wilhelm I of Prussia (later Emperor of Germany), who founded the town as the North Sea base for the Prussian navy in 1869. The city remains Germany's largest naval base today, and it is also the only German port for supertankers.
Voslapp Unterfeuer
1962. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off, synchronized with the rear range light. 17 m (56 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with gallery, painted with red and white horizontal bands. WSA Wilhelmshaven has a page for the lighthouse, Werning has a good photo, Trabas has a closeup photo by Ulrich Bode, and Bing has a satellite view. The Voslapp range lights replaced a single lighthouse, built in 1907 and seen in Huelse's historic postcard view. Located a short distance offshore about 4 km (2.5 mi) north of Voslapp. Accessible only by boat, but there are excellent views from the shore. ARLHS FED-248; Admiralty B1138; NGA 10212.

Hooksielplate Light, October 2004
anonymous Flickr Creative Commons photo (no longer online)
* Voslapp Oberfeuer
1962. Active; focal plane 60 m (197 ft); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off, synchronized with the front range light. 61 m (201 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with three galleries as a topmark, painted with red and white horizontal bands. WSA Wilhelmshaven has a page for the lighthouse, Werning has a good photo, Trabas has a closeup photo by Manfred Schüler, Wikimedia has several photos, and Bing has a satellite view. Located 4.3 km (2.7 mi) south southwest of the front light, just behind the dike (Geniusdeich) at Voslapp, about 8 km (5 mi) north of Wilhelmshaven. Site open, tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-249; Admiralty B1138.1; NGA 10216.
Wilhelmshaven Vorhafen (Seeschleusen) Oberfeuer
1960s. Active; focal plane 23 m (76 ft); white light, 2 s on, 2 s off. 22 m (72 ft) square building, about 6 stories tall, with light mounted on the roof. Trabas has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. This light is at the rear of the Vorhafen (outer harbor) of Wilhelmshaven, on a rectangular artificial island between the two locks (Seeschleusen) that provide entry to the protected inner harbor. The top floor of the building is the control room for the locks. The front light is on a steel post 180 m (590 ft) in front of the building, at the outer edge of the island. Site status unknown but probably closed to the public. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-262; Admiralty B1156.1; NGA 10268.
Wilhelmshaven Marinemole (replica)
2006. Inactive. 9 m (30 ft) four-legged tower with lantern and gallery standing on a square masonry base. The original lighthouse was deactivated at the end of July 2005. In November it was sold and relocated to Dangast (see below). This caused a public outcry, and in the fall of 2006 an exact replica of the original was constructed. Ali Zett has a photo, a closeup is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of a curved mole off the Schleusenstraße near the west end of Wilhelmshaven harbor. Site status unknown but probably open; there should be good views from nearby locations on the waterfront. Site manager: Port of Wilhelmshaven.
**** Feuerschiff Weser (Norderney I)
1907. Decommissioned 1981. 46 m (151 ft) steel lightship with cylindrical light tower amidships, lantern, and gallery. Hull and light tower painted red, superstructure and lantern painted white. A photo is at right, Klempau also has a page on the lightship, another photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. The ship bears the name of its last station, off the mouth of the Weser. Its first station was off Norderney; it also served off the Elbe and for many years as a relief vessel. In 1983 the ship was donated to a sailing club in Wilhelmshaven and restored as a restaurant. It has also been used as a youth hostel, and it is popular as a site for weddings. Moored at the Bontekai, a section of Wilhelmshaven harbor, just west of the Kaiser Wilhelm bridge. Site open, restaurant open daily except Mondays. Owner/site manager: Seglerkameradschaft Klaus Störtebeker (Feuerschiff Weser). ARLHS FED-143.
Feuerschiff Weser
Feuerschiff Weser, Wilhelmshaven, August 2009
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Christian (cvknet.de)

Jadebusen Lighthouses
Note: The Jadebusen is a roughly triangular sound south of Wilhelmshaven, at the head of the Jade Bight.
* Wilhelmshaven Marinemole (relocated to Dangast)
1975. Inactive since 2005. 9 m (30 ft) four-legged tower with lantern and gallery. Lighthouse painted black. Leuchtturm-Atlas reports that this lighthouse was deactivated at the end of July 2005. In November 2005 it was sold to Capt. Anton Tapken, who relocated the lighthouse to Dangast, a village on the southwestern shore of Jade Bay. F.H. Ehrenberger has a photo, another photo of the relocated lighthouse is available, and Bing has an indistinct satellite view. Mathias Conrad has a 2002 photo of the light at its original location (see also above). Located on the west side of the harbor entrance in Dangast. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: private. ARLHS FED-263; ex-Admiralty B1162.
Arngast
1910. Active; focal plane 30 m (99 ft); directional light; depending on direction vessels may see a continuous white, red, or green light, a white or green flash every 3 s, two white flashes every 9 s, or a white light occulting once every 6 s. 36 m (118 ft) round cast iron tower with a large lantern and gallery, plus a smaller lantern mounted at one side of the gallery, mounted on a concrete pier. Lighthouse painted red with one white horizontal band. Werning's photo is at right, Trabas has a good closeup photo by Manfred Schüler, the Leuchtturm-Atlas site has a portfolio of photos, Wikimedia has photos, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. This venerable offshore lighthouse stands on a submerged sandbank (formerly an island) in the middle of the Jadebusen (Jade Bay), with its 13 sectors guiding vessels on various courses through the bay's tricky channels. In 2003 the tower was listed by the federal government as a historic building. Located about 5 km (3 mi) south of Wilhelmshaven; distantly visible from the Wilhelmshaven waterfront and many other locations around the roughly circular bay. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-021; Admiralty B1152; NGA 10300.

Arngast Light, Jade Bay
photo copyright Malte Werning; used by permission

Western Wesermarsch District Lighthouses

Note: The Wesermarsch district includes the Butjadingen peninsula between the Jade and Weser estuaries. The lighthouse of this group are on the east side of the Jade, opposite Wilhelmshaven. For Butjadingen lighthouses of the Weser, see the Bremen page.
Butjadingen Lighthouses
* Eckwarden Oberfeur (2)
1962 (station established 1914). Inactive since 2012. 37 m (121 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower with gallery and a thin funnel-shaped topmark. Access to the light is by an unenclosed spiral stairway. Entire lighthouse painted red. Werning's photo is at right, the Leuchtturm-Atlas page has a portfolio of photos, and Google has a satellite view. Huelse has a historic postcard view of the original lighthouse. This unusual lighthouse anchored a southbound range guiding ships to Wilhelmshaven; it is 2350 m (1.5 mi) south southeast of the front range. Located at Eckwarden on the east side of the Jade directly opposite Wilhelmshaven. Site open, tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-078; Admiralty B1141.1; NGA 10260.
Eckwarden Unterfeuer (2)
1962 (station established 1914). Inactive since 2012. 18 m (59 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted with red and white horizontal bands; lantern and gallery painted red. Werning has a closeup, and Google has a satellite view. Located in shallow water of the Jade about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) northwest of Eckwarden. Accessible only by boat or (with great caution) on foot at low tide. Site and tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-077; Admiralty B1141; NGA 10256.
* Tossens Oberfeuer (2)
1988 (station established 1973). Active; focal plane 51 m (167 ft); white light occulting once every 6 s. 52 m (171 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with a 3-ringed topmark, painted with red and white horizontal bands. Werning has an excellent photo, Trabas has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. This lighthouse anchors a southbound range guiding ships to Wilhelmshaven; it is 3860 m (2.4 mi) southeast of the front range. Located just behind the dike on the east side of the Jade about 3 km (2 mi) south of Tossens. Site open, tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-239; Admiralty B1134.1; NGA 10248.1.
Eckwarden Oberfeuer
Eckwarden Oberfeuer, Eckwarden
photo copyright Malte Werning; used by permission
* Tossens Oberfeuer (1)
1973. Inactive as a lighthouse since 1988. 51.5 m (170 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with a round control room near the top. A photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the southwest edge of the village of Tossens. Site and tower closed, but the tower is easily seen from anywhere nearby. Owner/operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven.
Tossens Unterfeuer
1973. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); white light occulting once every 6 s. 17 m (56 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with a 2-ringed topmark, painted with red and white horizontal bands. A photo is available, Trabas has Helmut Seger's distant view. Located in shallow water of the Jade about 2 km (1.2 mi) east of Tossens. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Operator: WSA Wilhelmshaven. ARLHS FED-238; Admiralty B1134; NGA 10248.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

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Adjoining pages: Northeast: Bremerhaven | Southeast: Bremen | West: Northern Netherlands

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Posted February 26, 2005. Checked and revised December 7, 2014. Lighthouses: 33; lightships: 3. Site copyright 2014 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.