Lighthouses of Australia: Victoria

The state of Victoria is located in the southeastern corner of Australia and includes the country's second largest metropolitan area, Melbourne. Victoria is the smallest mainland Australian state, but it has a dangerous coastline that required about 20 historic light stations. The eastern two thirds of the coastline faces south, looking across the Bass Strait to Tasmania, and the western third faces southwest onto the Great Southern Ocean.

Lighthouse management: coastal aids to navigation in Australia are maintained by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA). Harbor aids are maintained by the Port of Melbourne in the Melbourne area and by the Victorian Regional Channels Authority (VRCA) elsewhere. In most cases, these authorities are responsible only for the lighting equipment. The majority of the light stations are now parklands managed by Parks Victoria.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volume K of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals, and U.S. NGA numbers are from NGA Publication 111.

General Sources
Lighthouses of Victoria
The section of the Lighthouses of Australia site devoted to Victoria lights.
Lighthouses and Lightvessels in Australia - Victoria
Index to Wikipedia articles; most include photos.
Lighthouses of Australia - Victoria
An excellent website by Garry Searle, with photos and accounts of most of the lighthouses.
Grant and Tracey's Lighthouse Page - Victoria
Photos of most of the lighthouses posted by Grant Maizels.
Australian Lighthouses
This site, posted by Kevin Mulcahy, has a useful list of all Australian lighthouses linked to photos of some of them.
World of Lighthouses - Victoria
Photos available from Lightphotos.net.
Leuchttürme Australiens und Ozeaniens auf historischen Postkarten
Historic postcard images posted by Klaus Huelse.


Point Lonsdale Light, Queenscliff, October 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Qianlisi

East Gippsland Lighthouses
Gabo Island (2)
1862 (station established 1853). Active; focal plane 55 m (180 ft); three white flashes every 20 s. 47 m (156 ft) round granite tower with lantern and gallery. The unpainted tower is pink in color; lantern painted white. The principal keeper's house is occupied by a resident caretaker; the assistant keeper's house is available for overnight rental. Mike Irvine has a good photo, Maria Brandl has posted an account of a visit in June 2000, Searle has an excellent page with many photos and a drawing of the first lighthouse, and Bing has a satellite view. This majestic lighthouse marks Cape Howe, the southeastern corner of the Australian continent. The island is a park and wildlife reserve. The 150th anniversary of the lighthouse was celebrated in ceremonies in November 2012. Located on the southeastern corner of Gabo Island, about 8 km (5 mi) southwest of Cape Howe and 16 km (10 mi) east of Mallacoota. Accessible only by boat or by air; guided tours are available. Site and tower open to guided tours (reservations required). Operator: AMSA. Site manager: Parks Victoria (Gabo Island Lighthouse Reserve). ARLHS AUS-078; Admiralty K2558; NGA 6592.
** Point Hicks (Cape Everard)
1890. Active; focal plane 56 m (184 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 37 m (121 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Principal keeper's house occupied by a resident caretaker; two assistant keeper's houses available for overnight rental. A photo is at right, Rohan Rogers has a good photo, Lighthouses of Australia also has a page on the station, and Bing has a satellite view. This is the tallest lighthouse on the Australian mainland. In a design unusual for mainland Australia, there is no central column; the cast iron spiral stairs are cantilevered from the walls. The Friends of Point Hicks Lighthouse help support preservation of the site, which is included in Croajingolong National Park. Located in a remote area about 55 km (35 mi) south of Highway A1 at Cann River; 4WD suggested. Accessible by a hike of about 3 km (2 mi) from the end of the road. Site open, and there are tours of the tower daily at 1 pm. Operator: Victorian Regional Channels Authority. Site manager: Parks Victoria. ARLHS AUS-133; Admiralty K2556; NGA 6604.
* Mount Barkly (Lakes Entrance)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 74 m (243 ft); white light, 3 s on, 1 s off. 9 m (30 ft) robust square skeletal tower with a boxlike lantern and gallery, mounted on a square concrete base. Tower painted white, base red. Maizels has a photo, and Bing has a satellite view. The Gippsland Lakes are interconnected lagoons and marshes separated from the Bass Strait by a barrier beach. Since 1890 vessels have been able to enter the lakes through an artifically-maintained channel at the town of Lakes Entrance. The lighthouse is located on a hilltop commanding a direct view of the entrance about 800 m (1/2 mi) to the northwest. The site is easily accessible from the Princes Highway (highway A1). Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K2544; NGA 7168.
Point Hicks Light
Point Hicks Light, Croajingolong National Park, December 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Chip_2904

Wellington Shire Lighthouse
* Citadel Island (1)
1913. Inactive since 1982. 3.5 m (11 ft) lantern. Australia's first automated, acetylene-powered lighthouse. Originally located atop a granite pinnacle a few miles west of Wilson's Promontory, this light was replaced by a fiberglass tower. After being in storage for two decades it was restored by volunteers for display at the maritime museum in Port Albert. Site open; museum open daily September through May, also on weekends and school holidays June through August; tower closed. Owner/site manager: Gippsland Regional Maritime Museum. ARLHS AUS-057.

South Gippsland Lighthouses
Cliffy Island
1884. Active; focal plane 52 m (171 ft); white flash every 5 s. 12 m (39 ft) round granite tower with lantern and gallery. Tower unpainted; lantern and gallery painted white. The keeper's houses were demolished when the lighthouse was automated in 1971; stone walls formerly surrounding the houses remain. John Ford has a distant view, Wikipedia's article has a 1917 photo, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located on a steep-sided island in Bass Strait 32 km (20 mi) south of Port Albert and about 15 km (24 mi) east of the Wilson's Promontory coast. Accessible only by helicopter. Site and tower closed. Operator: AMSA. Site manager: Victoria Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources. ARLHS AUS-059; Admiralty K2500; NGA 7204.
Wilson's Promontory
1859. Active; focal plane 117 m (384 ft); white flash every 7.5 s. 19 m (62 ft) round granite tower with lantern and gallery. Tower unpainted; lantern and gallery painted white. A well-preserved light station with several keeper's houses and other buildings. A resident caretaker helps maintain the station. Three keeper's houses are available for overnight rental (reservations essential). Tim Bow's photo is at right, Chris Pinsent has a photo, Wikipedia has a brief article with a 2008 photo, Mark Merton has a beautiful aerial photo, and Bing has a somewhat indistinct satellite view. This historic and well-known lighthouse marks the southernmost point of the mainland of Australia at latitude 39°08' S. Wilson's Promontory--"The Prom"--is a scenic peninsula incorporated into one of Australia's most popular national parks. In April 2005 a wildfire burned most of the park south of Tidal River, temporarily cutting off access to the lighthouse. Fortunately, the light station buildings were saved from the fire. Located at the southern end of the peninsula with a sweeping view of the Bass Strait. Accessible by a hike of 19 km (12 mi) one way from Tidal River. Site open, tower closed. Operator: AMSA. Site manager: Parks Victoria (Wilson's Promontory National Park). ARLHS AUS-171; Admiralty K2492; NGA 7300.
* Cape Liptrap (2)
1951 (station established 1913). Active; focal plane 93 m (305 ft); white flash every 12 s. 10 m (32 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Foundations of the original lighthouse can be seen just below the modern tower. Cape Liptrap is a narrow, mountainous peninsula jutting into Bass Strait about 80 km (50 mi) northwest of Wilson's Promontory. The lighthouse was repainted and refurbished in 2001. Searle has a page with several photos of the current lighthouse and a historic photo of the original light, Wikipedia's article has a closeup photo by Wayne Butterworth, a 2007 closeup is available, Lightphotos.net has another closeup, and Bing has a satellite view. Located on the cape about 10 km (6 mi) southwest of Walkerville. Accessible by gravel road. Operator: AMSA. Site manager: Parks Victoria (Cape Liptrap Coastal Park). ARLHS AUS-037; Admiralty K2482; NGA 7320.

Wilson's Promontory Light, November 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Tim Bow

Phillip Island (Bass Strait Shire) Lighthouse
* Grossard Point (McHaffie's Point)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft); white, red or green light depending on direction, 4 s on, 1 s off. 13 m (43 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower with gallery, mounted on a square 1-story masonry equipment room. A closeup photo is available, and Bing has a satellite view. This light guides vessels entering Western Port, a bay southeast of Melbourne sheltered by Phillip Island. The station is known for its spectacular view of the bay. Located at the end of Grossard Point Road in Ventnor, on the northwest side of Phillip Island. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K2428; NGA List 7440.

Mornington Peninsula Lighthouses
Note: The Mornington Peninsula extends to the southeast of Melbourne, separating Western Port (actually on the east) from the broad Port Phillip bay.
**** Cape Schanck
1859. Active; focal plane 100 m (328 ft); white light shown to the south and west and red to the east, on 10.8 s, off 5.8 s, one quick intense flash, off 5.8 s. 21 m (70 ft) round limestone tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; lantern roof is red. A rotating 1st order Chance Brothers lens (1915) is in use; the original clockwork mechanism is also in place but is no longer used. The original limestone principal keeper's house is used as a lighthouse museum. Two assistant keeper's houses and an additional small cottage are in service as a bed and breakfast inn. Simon Yeo's photo is at right, Searle has a page with excellent photos, Wikipedia's article has a photo, Damien Huang has a good 2008 photo, Lighthouses of Australia has a report of a 2004 visit to the lighthouse, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. This handsome lighthouse is a landfall light for ships approaching Melbourne. Solidly built, it is one of the few Australian lighthouses with stone rather than iron stairs. It was carefully restored in the late 1970s and early 1980s and has become a very popular tourist attraction. Located at the end of Cape Schanck Road on the southwestern tip of the Mornington Peninsula, which shelters Port Phillip Bay. Site open, tower open to guided tours daily. Operator: AMSA. Site manager: Parks Victoria (Cape Schanck Lighthouse Reserve). ARLHS AUS-045; Admiralty K2423; NGA 7456.
South Channel Range Front (South Channel Pile Light)
1874. Reactivated (inactive 1985-1998); focal plane approx. 9 m (30 ft); white flash every 3 s. 9 m (30 ft) light tower centered on the roof of a 1-story octagonal wood keeper's house, mounted on wood pilings. Lighthouse painted white; gallery painted gold. Lighthouses of Australia has a page for the lighthouse, Lightphotos.net has a page with a fine photo, there's a Panoramio page with a 2009 photo, a 2007 photo is available, and Bing has a satellite view. This is one of only two surviving cottage pile lighthouses in Australia. Originally it guided ships on the South Channel, a natural deepwater channel that runs east southeast from Queenscliff parallel to the south shore of Port Phillip Bay. The lighthouse deteriorated rapidly after deactivation in 1985. In 1998, it was removed by Parks Victoria, restored on land, and then relocated to a site about halfway between the original location and the town of Rye. At its new home it is known officially as the Rye Channel South Light. Located about 3 km (2 mi) north of Rye. Accessible only by boat, but clearly visible from many locations on the shore. Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Parks Victoria (South Channel Pile Lighthouse). ARLHS AUS-150; Admiralty K2325.5; NGA 7523.4.
Cape Schanck Light
Cape Schank Light, Mornington Peninsula, January 2011
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Simon Yeo
* South Channel Range Rear ("Eastern Lighthouse", McCrae) (2)
1883 (station established 1854). Inactive since 1994. 34 m (110 ft) hexagonal pyramidal skeletal tower with central cylinder, lantern, and gallery. Entire lighthouse painted white. The keeper's houses have been demolished. The lighthouse was prefabricated in England in 1874 by Chance Brothers. In 1998, Parks Victoria thoroughly restored the exterior of the lighthouse. A photo is at right, Searle has a page with excellent photos of the outside and interior, Craig Ward has a view from the beach, Lightphotos.net has a photo, Lighthouses of Australia has a report of a 2004 visit to the lighthouse, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. Located beside the beach road (the Nepean Highway) at McCrae on the southeastern shore of Port Phillip Bay. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Parks Victoria (Rosebud Foreshore Reserve). ARLHS AUS-067.
* Schnapper Point
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); two quick green flashes every 5 s. 8 m (26 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower, painted white. A photo is available, and Bing has a satellite view. Schnapper Point is a promontory at Mornington on the eastern shore of Port Phillip Bay. Located at the end of the Mornington Pier, which extends the promontory. Formerly accessible by walking the pier, but Bing's view shows that a section of the pier missing. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS AUS-209; Admiralty K2330; NGA 7580.

Melbourne Lighthouses
Point Gellibrand Pile (?)
1906. Inactive since 1976. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical metal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Fresnel lens. This is the light tower formerly centered on the roof of the Point Gellibrand Pile Light, located in Port Phillip Bay off Williamstown southwest of Melbourne. The pile light was damaged beyond repair when the ship Melbourne Trader collided with it in 1976. The salvaged light tower was placed on display at the Melbourne Maritime Museum on South Wharf on the south bank of the Yarra River in downtown Melbourne, near the tall ship Polly Woodside. Bing has an aerial view. The museum was closed for several years for major renovations, and the lighthouse was in storage. It has now been returned to display at the museum. Owner: National Trust of Australia (Victoria). Site manager: Polly Woodside Museum. ARLHS AUS-079.
Fawkner Beacon (2?)
1991(?). Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); white flash every 5 s. 17 m (56 ft) post light with a triangular gallery, mounted on a platform supported by four piles. Tower painted with red and white horizontal bands. A photo is available. An earlier lighthouse was destroyed by collision with a ship on 6 December 1990. This light is a familiar reference point for vessels in Port Phillip Bay. Located 11 km (7 mi) south of Port Melbourne. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty K2337; NGA 7888.

South Channel Range Rear Light, November 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by glennnnn
Port Melbourne Range Front
1924. Reactivated; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); continuous blue light. 16 m (52 ft) slender round concrete tower, painted white with a red "cap" at the top. Drew Douglas's photo is at right, David Thompson has a 2007 photo of the lighthouse and the liner Queen Elizabeth II, Waymarking.com has a good photo of both range lights, and Bing has an aerial view. This tower and the next one listed guided ships to the docks at the head of Port Phillip Bay. The light was deactivated when the rear light was converted to a directional light; according to Lighthouses of Australia the light was not exhibited "for many years." Apparently it was reactivated in 2011. Located in the water about 500 m (550 yd) off Beach Street near Princes Pier. Accessible only by boat, but easily visible from shore. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: unknown. ARLHS AUS-273; Admiralty K2338; NGA 7895.
* Port Melbourne Channel (Port Melbourne Range Rear)
1924. Active; three lights: a general purpose light (focal plane 24 m (78 ft)) showing a white flash every 5 s; a leading light (focal plane 21 m (70 ft)) showing a red, white, or green light, depending on direction, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off; and a continuous blue range light at a focal plane of 18 m (59 ft). 26 m (85 ft) slender concrete tower, painted white with a red "cap" at the top. Paul Watkins has a 2008 closeup photo, Waymarking.com has a good photo of both range lights, Lightphotos.net has Jan de Jonge's photo looking down the range, and Bing has an aerial view. Formerly surrounded by an industrial area, this tower now stands at the north end of Beacon Vista, a boulevard in an upscale waterfront development called Beacon Cove. Located about 600 m (650 yd) inland from Beach Street east of Princes Pier. Site open, tower closed. Operator: Port of Melbourne. Site manager: unknown. ARLHS AUS-139; Admiralty K2338.1; NGA 7896.

Port Melbourne Range Front Light, January 2006
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Drew Douglas
* Point Gellibrand (Williamstown) (Time Signal) (2)
1849 (station established 1840). Inactive 1859-1934 and since 1987. 17 m (58 ft) tapered square bluestone tower carrying a timeball mast. No lantern; tower unpainted. Tower floodlit at night. A 2008 closeup photo is available, Searle's page has a closeup photo, Lightphotos.net has Jan de Jonge's photo, and Google has a satellite view. This is Victoria's oldest light station. Beginning in 1853 it was also equipped with a timeball apparatus: a mast with a sphere that was lowered each day precisely at 1 pm so that ships in the harbor could adjust their chronometers. The timeball remained in use until 1926. In 1934 the tower was reconverted to a lighthouse by the addition of a 15 m (50 ft) cylindrical brick tower atop the original structure. In 1989-90 this tower extension was removed and the tower was restored to its late 19th century appearance. The timeball is now lowered automatically each day at 1 pm. Located on Point Gellibrand at the south end of Nelson Place in Williamstown. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Parks Victoria (Point Gellibrand Heritage Park).

St. Leonards Lighthouse
West Channel (Pile Light)
1881 (lightship station established 1854). Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); flash every 6 s, white or red depending on direction. 11 m (36 ft) light tower centered on the roof of a 1-story octagonal wood keeper's house, mounted on wood pilings. Lighthouse painted white. A photo is at right, a 2011 photo is available, Wikimedia has a historic photo, there is a page with the history of the lighthouse, and Bing has a satellite view. This is one of only two surviving cottage pile lighthouses in Australia (the other is the South Channel Pile Light described above). The historic lighthouse marks the northeast end of a large shoal area off the east end of the Bellarine Peninsula, on the west side of Port Phillip Bay, and it also marks the northern end of the West Channel leading to the exit from Port Phillip Bay. The cast iron lantern is from the 1854 lightship. Sometime in the 1970s a new pile substructure was built; in the transfer of the lighthouse to the new base part of the veranda and balustrade were lost. In recent years the structure has been restored and converted to solar power. Like the South Channel Pile Light (see above), it is listed as a historic site in the Victorian Heritage Register. Located in Port Phillip Bay about 4 km (2.5 mi) east of St. Leonards. Accessible only by boat. Admiralty K2232.
West Channel Pile Light
West Channel Pile Light, St. Leonards
Victorian Heritage Register photo

Queenscliff Lighthouses

Note: Queenscliff is located on the west side of the entrance to Port Phillip Bay, a dangerous passage known to navigators as "The Rip." The Royal Yacht Club of Victoria has a brochure (pdf document) describing how the various ranges work to guides vessels through the passage.
* Queenscliff High ("The Black Lighthouse," Port Phillip Entrance Range Rear) (2)
1862 (station established 1843). Active; focal plane 40 m (130 ft); white light, fixed or occulting 2.5 s every 15 s, depending on direction. 25 m (82 ft) round bluestone (basalt) tower with lantern and gallery. The tower is unpainted dark stone (not actually black); the lantern and gallery are painted green. 3-story octagonal signal station (1850). The occultations are shown toward the entrance of Port Phillip Bay, in unison with the Queenscliff Low Light, Hume Tower, and Murray Tower. Ships in the proper channel see the Black and White Lighthouses in line and blinking in unison, with the Hume Tower on the left and the Murray Tower on the right. Angelica Jellibat's photo is at right, Wikipedia's article has a photo by Stephen Bain, Melissa Firminger has a good 2007 photo, Brett Matthews has a 2008 photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in Fort Queenscliff, a late 19th century fort and still an active army base. Parking available nearby. Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Port of Melbourne. ARLHS AUS-263; Admiralty K2200; NGA 7480.
* Queenscliff Low ("The White Lighthouse," Port Phillip Entrance Range Front) (2)
1863 (station established 1854). Active; focal plane 28 m (93 ft); light occults for 2 s every 15 s; light shows red, white, or green depending on direction. 22 m (73 ft) round bluestone (basalt) tower with lantern and gallery. Tower painted white with a red vertical stripe as a daymark; lantern and gallery painted dark green. 1-story keeper's house. The principal purpose of this light is to show a white light in range with the Queenscliff High Light to guide ships in the main ship channel entering Port Phillip Bay; ships off course to the right see a red light and those off course to the left see a green light. Various colors are shown in sectors indicating proper navigation from other directions. The lighthouse is flanked by two skeletal towers (next two entries) showing red and green lights, respectively, that blink off in unison with the lighthouse to provide a unique entrance pattern precisely defining the correct course through The Rip. A 2009 photo also shows the Murray Tower, Wikipedia's article has a photo by Michael Beckham, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a satellite view showing all three towers. Located in Victoria Park, on the lower slope of the Queenscliff Peninsula just inside the bay. Parking provided nearby at Fort Queenscliff. Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Port of Melbourne. ARLHS AUS-262; Admiralty K2200.1; NGA 7484.
* Hume Tower
1924. Active; focal plane 28 m (92 ft); red light, occulting for 2.5 s every 15 s. 23 m (75 ft) square cylindrical steel tower carrying a white slatted daymark. The Hume Tower lines up with the Queenscliff High Light to indicate the western edge of the deepwater channel into Port Phillip Bay. This tower appears in Brett Matthews's 2008 photo of the White Lighthouse, and it is to the left of the white lighthouse in a Bing satellite view. Located adjacent to the Queenscliff Low Light. Parking provided nearby at Fort Queenscliff. Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Port of Melbourne. ARLHS AUS-288; Admiralty K2199.9; NGA 7476.
Queenscliff High Light
Queenscliff High (Black) Light, March 2010
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Angelica Jellibat
* Murray Tower
1974. Active; focal plane 25 m (82 ft); green light, occulting for 2.5 s every 15 s. Approx. 16 m (53 ft) square cylindrical steel tower carrying a large green daymark. The Murray Tower lines up with the Queenscliff High Light to indicate the eastern edge of the deepwater channel into Port Phillip Bay. It replaced a stone obelisk on the same location. This tower appears in a 2009 photo of the White Lighthouse, and it is a little to the right of the white lighthouse in a Bing satellite view. Located adjacent to the Queenscliff Low Light. Parking provided nearby at Fort Queenscliff. Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Port of Melbourne. ARLHS AUS-289; Admiralty K2204; NGA 7488.
* Fort West
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 20 m (66 ft); continuous white or red light, depending on direction. Approx. 8 m (26 ft) square cylindrical steel skeletal tower carrying a white slatted daymark. This light is seen at the far left of Nancy Rau's photo of the Queenscliff lighthouses, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. This directional light guides small craft and pilot vessels; it was formerly the front light of a range with the Black Lighthouse as the rear light. Located at a car park a short distance west of Point Lonsdale (next entry). Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Port of Melbourne. Admiralty K2199; NGA 7472.
** Point Lonsdale (3)
1902 (station established 1863). Active; focal plane 37 m (120 ft); white or red light depending on direction, 2 s on, 2 s off, 2 s on, 9 s off. 21 m (70 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, the lower portion surrounded by a 2-story circular signal station. Tower and signal building painted white, lantern and gallery black. Fog horn (2 blasts every 30 s). There is a photo at the top of this page, Searle has both current and historic photos, Wikipedia's article has a photo by Stephen Bain, and Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a somewhat indistinct satellite view. This lighthouse guards "The Rip," the narrow entrance to Port Phillip Bay, Melbourne's harbor. The signal station, added in 1950, was staffed at all times to communicate with vessels making the dangerous passage into or out of the harbor. The station includes Victoria's only surviving fog signal building (1884) and an explosives shed (1891) that was used to store rockets fired to communicate with vessels. The historic foghorn is operational and is still used in foul weather. The exterior of the lighthouse was restored in 1997, and in 2002 the Victorian Channels Authority and Heritage Victoria cooperated to restore the interior. In 2012, a plan was announced to gradually destaff the lighthouse as its staff resigns or retires; this has led to grave concern aand even some outrage. The area immediately offshore is protected within the Port Phillip Heads Marine National Park. Located on the west side of the bay entrance off Flinders St. in Queenscliff; accessible by paved road. Site open; tower open to guided tours every Sunday from the Queenscliff Maritime Museum (reservations required). Operator/site manager: Victorian Regional Channels Authority. ARLHS AUS-222; Admiralty K2194; NGA 7460.

Surf Coast Shire Lighthouse
***
Split Point (Eagles Nest Point, "The White Queen")
1891. Active; focal plane 66 m (218 ft); four white flashes, separated by 3 s, every 20 s. 34 m (110 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; lantern roof is red. The original Chance Brothers 1st order Fresnel lens continues in use. At least two 1-story keeper's houses. Mike Lehmann's photo is at right, Wikipedia's article has that photo and several others, a fine closeup is available, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. This lighthouse, known affectionately as the White Queen, is a welcoming sight for sailors westbound for Melbourne. In early 2004, two keeper's houses were sold at auction as private residences. In early 2005 the Surf Coast Shire government secured a lease of the lighthouse and then contracted with Eco-Logic, Inc., to offer tours. Ceremonies opening the lighthouse to the public were held on 2 November 2005. Located on the point at Airey's Inlet, about 120 km (75 mi) southwest of Melbourne. Parking provided; a popular oceanfront trail begins at the lighthouse. Site open, tower open for tours daily but reservations are essential. Operator: AMSA. Site manager: Surf Coast Shire. ARLHS AUS-154; Admiralty K2182; NGA 7984.
Split Point Light
Split Point Light, Airey's Inlet, November 2007
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by Mike Lehmann

Colac Otway Shire Lighthouse
**** Cape Otway
1848 (Mortimer Lewis). Inactive since 1994. 20 m (65 ft) round sandstone tower, painted white. 1st order Chance Brothers Fresnel lens in use. Prinicipal keeper's house (1857) available for overnight accommodations. Duplex assistant keeper's house (1858), telegraph station (1859), and other historic buildings. The active light (focal plane 73 m (239 ft); three white flashes, separated by 4.5 s, every 18 s; red flashes shown over rocks close to shore) is on a 4 m (13 ft) fiberglass tower. Mike Fritz's photo is at right,Lighthouses of Australia has historical information, Searle also has a nice page with many photos, Wikipedia's article has a photo by Christoph Settgast, Susan Hunt has a good view, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. One of Australia's best known, best preserved, and most visited lighthouses. Cape Otway and Cape Wickham (on King Island, Tasmania) frame the 84 km (52 mi) wide western entrance to Bass Strait, known to 19th century sailors as the Eye of the Needle. The light station, second oldest on the Australian mainland, was built as the principal landfall light for ships arriving in southeastern Australia from the Cape of Good Hope. This the second oldest lighthouse of mainland Australia, and at the time it was built the surrounding area was remote and wild. The 150th anniversary of the lighthouse was celebrated in August 1998. The station is now maintained by Parks Victoria and operated by a lessee, Tourism Great Ocean Road Pty. Ltd. Located on the cape about 20 km (12 mi) southwest of Apollo Bay. Site open, tower open to guided tours daily. Site manager: Cape Otway Lightstation. ARLHS AUS-043; Admiralty K2172; NGA 8012.

Warrnambool and Moyne Shire Lighthouses
* Lady Bay Lower (Range Front)
1854 (lit since 1871). Active; focal plane 27 m (82 ft); continuous red or green light, depending on direction. 8 m (26 ft) square stone tower with lantern and gallery, painted white with red trim; lantern roof is red. Lighthouses of Australia has a page for the lighthouse, Stuart Rowe has a nighttime photo of the lighthouse in action, a daytime photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. The tower was built as an unlit obelisk providing a daytime range; in 1871 the lantern of the former Lady Bay Beach Light (1859) was moved atop the obelisk. The present light is directional, showing green to ships on a proper course into Lady Bay and red otherwise. The lighthouses are part of a maritime history complex that includes several buildings, exhibits, and daily presentations. Located at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum in Warrnambool. Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village. ARLHS AUS-098; Admiralty K2158; NGA 8016.
Cape Otway Light
Cape Otway Light, Apollo Bay, October 2008
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Mike Fritz
* Lady Bay Upper (Range Rear)
1859 (relocated 1872). Active; focal plane 33 m (109 ft); white flash every 5 s. 8 m (26 ft) round stone tower with lantern and gallery, painted white with red trim; lantern roof is red. Lighthouses of Australia has a page for the lighthouse, Milan Scepka has a good photo, another closeup photo is available, Lightphotos.net has Jan de Jonge's photo, and Google has a satellite view. The tower was built in 1859 on Middle Island, about 2200 m (1.4 mi) southwest of its present location. In 1871-72 it was dismantled and rebuilt to form the Lady Bay Range. Located on Merri Street, 130 m (425 ft) north of the front light near the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum in Warrnambool. Site open, tower closed. Operator/site manager: Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village. ARLHS AUS-099; Admiralty K2158.1; NGA 8020.
* Griffiths Island (Griffith Island, Port Fairy)
1859. Active; focal plane 12 m (41 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 11 m (36 ft) round bluestone tower with lantern and gallery, painted white with red trim; lantern roof is red. The keeper's houses were demolished around 1956. Gareth Jones has a fine 2007 photo, Lightphotos.net has Jan de Jonge's photo, and Bing has a satellite view. In 2000, volunteers restored the site, removing non-native vegetation to reveal the foundations of the keeper's houses and other structures. Located on the eastern point of the island, which shelters the harbor of Port Fairy. Accessible by footbridge and a walk of about 400 m (1/4 mi). Site open, tower closed. Operator: Victorian Regional Channels Authority. Site manager: Moyne Shire Council. ARLHS AUS-086; Admiralty K2136; NGA 8028.

Glenelg Shire Lighthouses
* Whaler's Bluff (Whaler Point, Portland Bay)
1859 (relocated 1889). Active; focal plane 41 m (135 ft); three white flashes, separated by 4.5 s, every 30 s; red flashes are shown over the reef to the east. 12 m (39 ft) round stone tower, painted white with red trim; entire lantern is red. The keeper's houses have been demolished. Darrell Morrison has a good photo, Searle also has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. The lighthouse was built on what is now called Battery Point south of Portland; it was dismantled and relocated in 1889 so that artillery could be placed at that site. Located on a bluff at the end of Lighthouse Street on the north side of Portland. Site open, tower closed. Operator: Victorian Regional Channels Authority. ARLHS AUS-168; Admiralty K2138; NGA 8048.
**** Cape Nelson
1884. Active; focal plane 75 m (246 ft); four white flashes, separated by 3 s, every 20 s. 32 m (105 ft) round bluestone tower, painted white; lantern roof is red. 4th order Chance Brothers Fresnel lens in use. The keeper's houses are available for overnight accommodations. Stables and workshop converted to use as a café. An unusual feature of this station is a long rubblestone wall built to protect the keeper's houses from the frequent high winds. Susan Hunt's photo is at right, Natalie Townsend has a good 2007 photo, Searle has good photos, Wikimedia has a photo by Jimmy Harris, Lighthouses of Australia has a page for the lighthouse, and Google has a fuzzy satellite view. This historic and well preserved light station is now a state park with visitor facilities operated by a lessee. Located 13 km (8 mi) south of Portland; accessible by paved road. Site open, tower open to guided tours daily. Operator: AMSA. Site manager: Parks Victoria (Cape Nelson State Park). ARLHS AUS-041; Admiralty K2136; NGA 8064.
Cape Nelson Light
Cape Nelson Light, Portland, April 2008
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Susan Hunt

Information available on lost lighthouses:

  • Lady Bay Beach (1859-1871), Warrnambool. ARLHS AUS-272.
  • Point Grant (1947-1998), Phillip Island. The skeletal lighthouse has been replaced by a small fiberglass light. ARLHS AUS-207.

Notable faux lighthouses:

  • Elwood (St. Kilda) Marina, southeast of Melbourne on Port Phillip Bay, has a 18 m (59 ft) faux lighthouse that carries two spotlights and is floodlit at night, but it is not an official aid to navigation.

Adjoining pages: North: New South Wales | South: Tasmania | West: South Australia

Return to the Lighthouse Directory index | Ratings key

Posted new May 3, 2004. Checked and revised May 24, 2013. Lighthouses: 31. Site copyright 2013 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.