Lighthouses of Indonesia: Southern Maluku (Moluccas)

Indonesia has been independent since 1945, after having been the Dutch East Indies for more than 350 years. It is a huge country, stretching along both sides of the Equator for more than 46 degrees of longitude (roughly 5100 km or 3200 miles). Comprised of some 17,000 islands (more than 6000 inhabited islands), it has hundreds of major aids to navigation.

This page includes the lighthouses of the southern and southeastern portions of Maluku Province. The province includes the central and southern islands of Maluku (the Moluccas), the islands traditionally known in the West as the "Spice Islands." Maluku lies east of Sulawesi (Celebes), south of the Philippines, and west of New Guinea. The islands covered by this page lie between the larger islands of Timor and New Guinea, separating the Banda Sea to the northwest from the Arafura Sea to the southeast.

Photos of lighthouses in Maluku are extremely rare on the Internet. Please let me know if you have or can locate additional photos. Special thanks to Michel Forand for his research in support of this page.

The Indonesian word for a lighthouse is mercusuar. The phrase menara suar, which includes the Arabic word menara, is sometimes used instead. Aids to navigation in Indonesia are operated and maintained by the Directorate General of Sea Navigation.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volumes F and K of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
World of Lighthouses - Indonesia
Photos by various photographers available from Lightphotos.net.
Online List of Lights - Indonesia
Coming soon: photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas.
 
Pulau Lakor Light
Pulau Lakor Light, Leti Islands, November 2012
Panoramio photo copyright Darell Tristan Utanmeru
used by permission

Southwest Maluku Regency (Far Eastern Sunda Islands) Lighthouses

Note: These islands lie north and east of Timor at the extreme eastern end of the Lesser Sunda Islands. There are two chains of islands. The northern chain, known as the Barat Daya Islands, includes the relatively large island of Wetar and a string of smaller islands including Romang and Damar. The southern chain (unnamed) extends from the east end of Timor and includes Kisar, the Leti Islands, Sermata Islands, and Babar Islands.
Wetar Lighthouses
Pulau Liran (Wetar Strait) (2)
2010 (?) (station established 1903). Active; focal plane 85 m (279 ft); four white flashes every 40 s. 40 m (131 ft) square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. The lighthouse is near the left edge of Bjørn Grøtting's aerial photo, and Bing has a satellite view of the station. The original lighthouse was a hexagonal skeletal tower with lantern and gallery; the Amsterdam Tropenmuseum has a 1939 photo. This lighthouse is important in guiding ships toward the island of Timor. Located at the southern tip of Liran, a small island off the southwestern tip of the much larger island of Wetar, about 75 km (45 mi) north northeast of Dili, Timor Leste. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-357; Admiralty K1372; NGA 25716.
Tanjung Tutuneden (Tutun Eden)
2007. Active; focal plane 45 m (148 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 40 m (131 ft) square skeletal tower, probably with lantern and gallery, painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a prominent cape on the south coast of Pulau Wetar. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1372.3; NGA 25716.3.
Tanjung Tutunhatoloi (Tutun Hatoloi)
2004. Active; focal plane 90 m (295 ft); white flash every 7 s. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted white. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located at the northeastern corner of Wetar. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1372.5; NGA 25716.6.

Romang Lighthouse
Pulau Nyata
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 35 m (115 ft); three white flashes every 15 s. Approx. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on Pulau Nyata, off the west side of the larger Pulau Romang, about 50 km (30 mi) east northeast of Pulau Wetar. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1373.5; NGA 25718.5.

Kisar Lighthouse
Tanjung Tutunmahin (Pulau Kisar)
2004. Active; focal plane 90 m (295 ft); white flash every 4.5 s. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located at the southeastern tip of Pulau Kisar, an island about 30 km (19 mi) north of the eastern tip of Timor. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1373.2.

Leti Islands Lighthouses
Tanjung Tutpateh (Pulau Leti)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 42 m (138 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. "White metal framework structure," according to NGA; this is probably a square skeletal tower with gallery. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view of the station. This light and the former Pulau Yako Light in Timor Leste framed a narrow passage around the eastern end of Timor, joining the Banda Sea to the Timor Sea. Located at the western tip of Pulau Leti, westernmost of the three Leti Islands, 35 km (22 mi) east northeast of Pulau Yako. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-335; Admiralty K1374; NGA 25719.
Serwaru (Pulau Leti)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); two white flashes every 7 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. A distant view by Darell Tristan Utanmeru is also seen at right, but the tower is not seen in Google's satellite view. Located on the waterfront at Serwaru, on the north coast of Pulau Leti. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1374.3.
Kaiwatu (Pulau Moa)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. A photo is available, but the tower is not conspicuous in Google's fuzzy satellite view. Located on the waterfront at Kaiwatu, near the northwestern end of Pulau Moa, the largest of the Leti Islands. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1374.5.
Warwawang (Pulau Lakor)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); white flash every 6 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, and the tower is not seen in Google's fuzzy satellite view. Located on the waterfront at Kaiwatu, near the northwestern end of Pulau Moa, the largest of the Leti Islands. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1374.8.
Pulau Lakor
2007. Active; focal plane 35 m (115 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted white, mounted on a square 1-story equipment building. Darell Tristan Utanmeru's photo is at the top of this page, and Bing has a satellite view. Pulau Lakor is the easternmost of the three major islands of the Leti group. Located at Keti, a village on the south side of the island. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1375.

Serwaru Light, Leti Islands, April 2013
Panoramio photo copyright Darell Tristan Utanmeru; used by permission

Sermata Islands Lighthouse
Meatiy Miarang (Meaty Miarang, Meatimiarang, Brisbane Island)
1903. Active; focal plane 25 m (82 ft); three white flashes every 29 s. 23 m (75 ft) hexagonal skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. No photo of the lighthouse is available, but Hendrik Sombo has a photo of one of the station buildings and Bing has a satellite view of the station. The historic lighthouse may survive here. The lighthouse marks an extensive and dangerous reef system midway between Pulau Lakor, in the Leti group, and Pulau Sermata, the largest island of the Sermata group. Located on a small island at the south end of the reef. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-166; Admiralty K1376; NGA 25720.

Babar Islands Lighthouses
Tepa
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); white flash every 5 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on the waterfront at Tepa, on the west side of Pulau Babar, the largest of the Babar Islands, halfway between the Leti and Tanimbar islands. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1376.1.
Kroing Letwurung
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); white flash every 10 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Bing has an indistinct satellite view. Located on the waterfront at Letwurung, on the west side of Pulau Babar. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1376.2.
Papilewan (Pulau Masela)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); two white flashes every 7.5 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Google has an indistinct satellite view. Pulau Masela is a small island on the south side of the Babar group. Located on the waterfront at Papilewan, on the north side of Pulau Masela. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1376.25.
Pulau Masela
2007. Active; focal plane 43 m (141 ft); two white flashes every 12 s. 40 m (131 ft) square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, mounted atop a large building. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view of the station. Located at the southern end of the island. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1376.3.

Western Southeast Maluku Regency (Tanimbar Islands) Lighthouses

Note: The Tanimbar Islands are roughly halfway between Timor and Papua (New Guinea). There are some 65 islands in the group, tightly clustered around the large island of Yamdena.
Selaru Lighthouses
Tanjung Arousu (Orousu)
2006. Active; focal plane 37 m (121 ft); white flash every 10 s. 30 m (98 ft) octagonal white concrete tower with lantern and gallery. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Pulau Selaru is the southernmost island of the Tanimbar group. Located at the southern tip of the island, facing the Arafura Sea. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1376.5; NGA 25721.
Pulau Selaru East
2007. Active; focal plane 45 m (148 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 40 m (131 ft) square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, mounted atop a large building. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view of the station. This station is very similar to the Pulau Masela station. Located near the northeastern end of Pulau Selaru. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1378.5.
* Adaut
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); white flash every 4 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Bing has an indistinct satellite view. Located on the waterfront at Adaut, on the north coast of Pulau Selaru. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1378.8.

Yamdena Lighthouses
Pulau Asutubun (Asoeboetoen) (2?)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); white flash every 3 s. 15 m (49 ft) skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available. The tower is not seen in Google's satellite view of the listed location, but about 2 km (1.25 mi) north a satellite view shows a light on a square platform offshore. Located off the west side of Pulau Asutubun, an island off the southern tip of the much larger Pulau Yamdena. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1379; NGA 25724.
* Saumlaki (2)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 30 m (98 ft); two white flashes every 15 s. Approx. 27 m (89 ft) square skeletal tower, painted white. Achmad Yurianto's distant view is at right, Ernst Pantouw has a closer photo, and the tower is centered in Google's distant satellite view. NGA lists a much shorter tower for this station. Located on the waterfront of Saumlaki, the regency capital and principal town of Tanimbar, near the southeastern corner of Pulau Yamdena. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1380; NGA 25732.
Saumlaki Light
Saumlaki Light, Pulau Yamdena, November 2010
Panoramio Creative Commons photo by Achmad Yurianto
Meyundas (Pulau Yamdena)
2007. Active; focal plane 45 m (148 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 40 m (131 ft) square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white, mounted on a 2-story coast guard building. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view of the station. Located in Meyundas, a town on the east coast of Pulau Yamdena. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1379.5.

Northern Tanimbar Islands Lighthouses
Pulau Larat Southeast
2007. Active; focal plane 45 m (148 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 40 m (131 ft) skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white and mounted atop a coast guard building. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view of the station. Located on the southeastern coast of Pulau Larat, an island at the north end of the Tanimbar group. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1383.5.
Tanjung Warlangir (Pulau Fordate)
2003. Active; focal plane 74 m (243 ft); white flash every 6 s. 40 m (131 ft) skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view showing the station. Located at the extreme northeastern end of the Tanimbar group. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1384; NGA 25741.
Pulau Kalbur
2003. Active; focal plane 60 m (197 ft); white flash every 4 s. 40 m (131 ft) skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view of the station. Located on an island at the northern end of the Tanimbar group. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1384.5; NGA 25741.2.
Adodo (Pulau Molu)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); white flash every 4 s. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located at the foot of the pier at Adodo (Welangkau), on the north coast of Pulau Molu, the northernmost of the Tanimbar Islands. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1390.

Aru Islands Regency Lighthouses

Note: The Aru Islands are the easternmost island group of Maluku, located about 150 km (90 mi) southwest of the Papua (New Guinea) coast. The largest island by far is Tanahbesar (also called Wokam); Dobo, the capital of the regency and chief port of the islands, is on Wamar, just off the west coast of Tanahbesar.
Tanjung Ular
Date unknown (station established 1906). Active; focal plane 22 m (72 ft); white light, 3 s on, 2 s off. 13 m (43 ft) iron skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view of the station. Located in the Aru group of islands, at the northwestern tip of Pulau Wamar, marking the approach to the port of Dobo. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632; NGA 25872.
* Dobo (2)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 22 m (72 ft); continuous red light. Approx. 20 m (66 ft) square skeletal tower. Martin Manurung's photo is at right, and additional photos are available, but the tower is hard to distinguish in Google's satellite view. NGA lists a previous tower having a focal plane of only 8 m (26 ft). The lighthouse is similar to the Saumlaki lighthouse (see above). Located on the waterfront at Dobo, on Pulau Wamar. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K1632.4; NGA 25884.
Pulau Warilau (Tanjung Watuleijurung)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 30 m (98 ft); white flash every 4 s. 28 m (92 ft) skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available, and Google has only a very fuzzy satellite view of the area. Located on Pulau Warilau, at the northern end of the Aru Islands. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1633; NGA 25876.
Pulau Konan
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 33 m (108 ft); two white flashes every 14 s. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a small island off the northeastern tip of Pulau Tanahbesar. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.98.

Dobo Light, Dobo, June 2008
Panoramio Creative Commons photo by Martin Manurung (no longer online)
Pulau Karaweira Mariri
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 32 m (105 ft); two white flashes every 12.5 s. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a small island off the northeast coast of Pulau Tanahbesar. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.95.
Tanjung Uafu Fenjuring
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 32 m (105 ft); three white flashes every 15 s. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, and the tower is not seen in Google's fuzzy satellite view. This light marks the easternmost point of the Aru Islands. Located on the northeast coast of Pulau Penambulai. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.9.
Pulau Kultubai (North)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 32 m (105 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 30 m (98 ft) square skeletal tower painted white. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view Located on an island on the east side of the Aru group. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.85.
Pulau Kultubai (Reef)
2007 (?). Active; focal plane 35 m (115 ft); two white flashes every 12 s. 30 m (98 ft) "white beacon." No photo available, and the tower is too new to appear in Bing's satellite view of the islet. Apparently located on a tiny island on a dangerous reef at the southeastern corner of the Aru group. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.7; NGA 25886.3.
Pulau Karang
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 33 m (108 ft); three white flashes every 16 s. 30 m (98 ft) "white beacon." No photo available, but Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on the south side of an island on the southeastern side of the Aru Islands. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.75.
Pulau Enu
2006. Active; focal plane 46 m (151 ft); white flash every 10 s. 40 m (131 ft) octagonal concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Entire lighthouse is white. No photo available, but Google has a good satellite view. Pulau Enu is a small island in the Arafura Sea at the southeastern corner of the Aru group. Located on the south side of the island. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.8; NGA 25886.5.
Pulau Batugoyang
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 32 m (105 ft); two white flashes every 11 s. 30 m (98 ft) "white beacon." No photo available, but Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on a small island at the extreme southern tip of the Aru Islands. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty K1632.65.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Central Maluku | East: West Papua | South: Timor Leste | Southwest: Northeastern Sundas

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Posted December 31, 2008. Checked and revised March 9, 2017. Lighthouses: 36. Site copyright 2017 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.