Lighthouses of Guatemala

Guatemala is the northwesternmost country of Central America, bordering Mexico. The country has a coastline about 250 km (150 mi) long facing south on the Pacific Ocean and a short coastline facing northeast on the Gulf of Honduras, an arm of the Caribbean Sea. The principal ports include Puerto Quetzal (San José) on the Pacific and Puerto Barrios on the Gulf of Honduras.

Aids to navigation in Guatemala are the responsibility of the national port authority, the Comisión Nacional Portuaria. The Spanish word for a lighthouse is faro. In Spanish-speaking America, this word is used generally for all navigational lights, large and small, although smaller lights are also called balizas (beacons).

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volume J of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals for Caribbean lights and from volume G for Pacific lights. Light List numbers are from NGA Publication 110 for Caribbean lights and from Publication 111 for Pacific lights.

General Sources
Online List of Lights - Guatemala Atlantic
Photos by Capts. Theo Hinrichs and Peter Mosselberger, posted by Alexander Trabas.
Central American Lighthouses
Photos by Larry Myhre.

Cabo Tres Puntas Light
Cabo Tres Puntas Light
photo copyright Capt. Theo Hinrichs; used by permission

Caribbean Coast Lighthouses

Izabal Department Lighthouses
Puerto Barrios
Date unknown. Active; focal plane unknown; white flash every 8 s. Approx. 25 m (82 ft) triangular skeletal communications tower, painted with red and white horizontal bands. Trabas has Capt. Peter's photo, and a Google satellite view probably shows the shadow of the tower. Located on a low hill about 1.6 km (1 mi) east southeast of the main quay in Puerto Barrios. Site status unknown. Admiralty J5989; NGA 110-16418.
Cabo Tres Puntas
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 40 m (131 ft); white flash every 3 s. 39 m (128 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery. Trabas has a photo by Capt. Theo (a portion is seen at the top of this page), and Bing has an indistinct satellite view. Located about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) east of the tip of the peninsula sheltering the bay of Puerto Barrios, near the village of Santa Inés Chicar. Site status unknown. ARLHS GUL-001; Admiralty J5992; NGA 110-16424.

Pacific Coast Lighthouses

Escuintla Department Lighthouses
Puerto Quetzal (San José)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 30 m (98 ft); two white flashes every 5 s. Approx. 28 m (92 ft) square skeletal tower, painted with red and white horizontal bands. Google has a satellite view. NGA lists this as an aviation light, but there is no airport nearby; the light appears to function as the landfall light for the port. Puerto Quetzal is Guatemala's principal port on the Pacific; its dredged harbor has replaced the open roads of nearby San José. The port serves both commercial traffic and cruise ships. Located just to the east of the harbor entrance. Site status unknown. Admiralty G3386.6; NGA 111-15363.5.
Puerto Quetzal Entrance Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); quick-flashing white light. Approx. 10 m (33 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted white. The front of the tower carries a rectangular daymark, red with a white vertical stripe. Myhre has a 2012 photo, and Google has a good satellite view. Located in a picnic area on the west side of the harbor entrance. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty G3385; NGA 111-15361.
Puerto Quetzal Entrance Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 18 m (59 ft); white light occulting once every 4 s. Approx. 16 m (52 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted red. The tower carries a long rectangular daymark, red with a white vertical stripe. Myhre has a 2012 photo, and Google has a good satellite view. Located on the south shore of the harbor. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty G3385.1; NGA 111-15361.5.

San Marcos Department Lighthouses
* Ocos Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); white flash every 4 s. Approx. 12 m (39 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, attached to a 1-story equipment building. Lighthouses painted with vertical blue and white stripes (the color pattern of the Guatemalan flag); lantern painted red. Anton Jensen has a view from the rear light, and Google has a satellite view. This range marks Guatemala's border with Mexico. Located about 200 m (220 yd) southeast of the Mexican border at Los Faros (The Lighthouses), about 5 km (3 mi) west of Ocos. Site open, tower status unknown. Admiralty G3397; NGA 111-15354.
* Ocos Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 29 m (95 ft); white flash every 4 s. Approx. 24 m (79 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, attached to a 1-story equipment building. A reduced version of Anton Jensen's photo is at right, Juan Bauer has a photo, and a view from the sea are available. The lighthouse is noticeably taller than the front light in a Google satellite view. This range marks Guatemala's border with Mexico. Located about 350 m (380 yd) northeast of the front light. Site open, tower status unknown. Admiralty G3397.5; NGA 111-15354.5.
Ocos Range Rear Light
Ocos Range Rear Light, May 2007
Panoramio photo copyright
Anton Jensen; used by permission

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Belize | East: Honduras | Southeast: El Salvador | Northeast: Mexico South Coast

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Posted October 31, 2008. Checked and revised November 25, 2013. Lighthouses: 7. Site copyright 2013 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.