By Yankee Magazine
May 29 2019
Portland Head Lighthouse | Cape Elizabeth, Maine
Please note that businesses, attractions, and events throughout New England have been modified, closed, and/or canceled in response to the COVID-19 health crisis. Please travel responsibly, and check with state guidelines and individual businesses and organizations before making travel plans.
With upward of 200 lighthouses in New England, it’s hard to choose just 10 as the most worthy. But in compiling this New England lighthouse bucket list, we found each of the following to have something a little extra-special.
And for a better look at one popular New England lighthouse (that’s also available for rent!), check out episode 11 on season three of Weekends with Yankee, in which we visit Rose Island Lighthouse in Newport, Rhode Island.
Completed in 1791, the Portland Head lighthouse overlooking Casco Bay in the Gulf of Maine is the oldest lighthouse in the state of Maine (and the second most-photographed).
Learn more: Best of Portland, Maine | Yankee Editors’ Picks
Also known as Cape Neddick Light (for its location), this distinctive lighthouse just 100 yards from the mainland, on Nubble Island, is beloved by photographers for its classic New England look.
Learn more: Nubble Light | Maine’s Favorite Lighthouse
Looking straight down this wooden runway provides photographers and viewers with a focal perspective unlike that of any other lighthouse in New England.
There’s something hauntingly beautiful about the jagged coastal cliffs bordering Acadia National Park where Bass Harbor Head Light is located.
Learn more: Bass Harbor Head Light | Tremont, Maine’s Striking Landmark
One of the first signs of spring on Nantucket is the field of daffodils that blooms around the Sankaty Head Light in the historic whaling village of Siasconset.
Learn more: Cape Cod, Nantucket & Martha’s Vineyard Lighthouses | Photos
Located on the easternmost point of the contiguous United States, this red-and-white striped lighthouse stands out to visitors for its eye-catching pattern, and to sailors as an active navigational aid through the Quoddy Narrows.
Hop in an over-sand vehicle or take a little beach hike to this lighthouse in Provincetown in the late evening, and you’ll be rewarded with the spectacular sunset views Cape Cod is known for.
Learn more: Things to Do in Provincetown, MA | Coastal Weekend Getaway
Due to a colony of breeding puffins that call Petit Manan Island home, Petit Manan Light is not open to the public; however, you can still view the tall stone lighthouse (and the puffins) from aboard a tour boat.
Perched on a small, manmade island, New London Ledge Light is a three-story, 11-room brick and granite lighthouse constructed to resemble homes during the Colonial Revival. Furthermore, legend has it that the lighthouse is haunted by a grief-stricken ghost named Ernie, a lighthouse keeper in the early 1900s.
Learn more: The Most Haunted Hotels in New England
If staying overnight in a beautiful lighthouse tops your New England wish list, this lighthouse in beautiful Newport offers that opportunity – and you can’t beat the coastal views from those bedrooms.
Learn more: Exploring Rose Island Lighthouse in Newport, Rhode Island
This post was originally published in 2019 and has been updated.