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JUST AS MEDIEVAL CASTLES are monuments indicative of a particular cultural-historical period, lighthouses are monuments to our long-lived relationship to the oceans. While the technology is still in use, new lighthouses are modern, functional, and unappealing towers in comparison to the structures built in centuries past. Many of these icons face demolition or neglect, but passionate people all around the globe have formed groups to restore and save their history.

I was fortunate to visit two of the remaining staffed lighthouses in Canada, to see the beauty of the buildings and get an understanding of what it’s like to live as a lightkeeper. I was backpacking for a week on the West Coast Trail on Vancouver Island, a remote trail originally laid to aid in the rescue of shipwreck survivors. Just when I thought I was completely removed from the world, slogging through forests, bogs, and beaches, I walked right into the immaculately cut lawn of a lightkeeper’s home. It was a welcome spot to rest up, and the residents were happy to visit and tell us the history of their lighthouse.

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About The Author

Carrie Clark

Carrie is an outdoor enthusiast and lover of nature. She tries to incorporate art, music, colour, and movement into her daily life and believes in keeping things simple and being in the moment.

  • Morgane Croissant

    Beautiful! I love light houses. My dad is a sailor, so we have all seen a large number of them on the west coast of France.

  • Kathy Amen

    Such wonderful variety of form with the same function! Also the variety of locations. I usually just think of them as being on an ocean coast, but of course you need them on the big lakes and even big rivers. Neat!

  • F Ruth French

    Love your lighthouse pictures Carrie. Thanks for sharing. Hope you are well.

  • Restlessjo

    What a glorious collection of photos, Carrie. I live not too far from one of your least preposessing ones at Whitby on the north east coast of England. It’s not captured to best effect here (me being picky!) but we have some lovely ones up and down the coast, including my hometown, Hartlepool.

  • Discover Holland

    Wonderful to see Holland, Michigan on this list! Big Red is much beloved in this community and around the world!

  • Carol Robertson

    I’ve only had the chance to enjoy the plain wood painted ones in PEI. The grounds were always so lovely and well kept too. The loss of these icons for their intended use, is much like the prairies has done with their grain elevators. Thanks for a look at these varied and beautiful designs.

  • Ruth Boychuk

    Wonderful did not know there were so many kinds, shapes and colors

  • Geejie Mook

    Thank you Carrie and Steve! I loved them all…

  • Benjamin Kemper

    So sad that Brant Point lighthouse in Nantucket and the lighthouse at Gay Head, MV weren’t included! Some of New England’s most famous and beautiful lighthouses are on these eensy islands.

  • Ingrid Ombeck

    We made the lighthouse tour in Nova scotia, absolutly wonderful.

  • Benzie County Visitors Bureau

    We here in Benzie County couldn’t agree more that our Point Betsie is just amazing! Happy to see our fellow Michigan lighthouse in Holland on the list as well.

  • Tyler Wirick

    I use to be a lighthouse tech for the u.s. coast guard. I absolutely love working on the inside. some are a bit creepy but the history and design are what grabs my attention. my favorite is white shoal on the top of lake Michigan!

  • vishalheble

    Hornum,sylt,germany is also too good!!!

  • D Mace

    Fastnet Rock is also pretty sweet

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