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Point Sur Lighthouse
Vacation Travel Guide

Spot sea life and admire the breathtaking coastal scenery of the Big Sur region from the top of this 19th-century lighthouse.

Point Sur Lighthouse is a destination for maritime history enthusiasts as well as those who enjoy spotting varied wildlife and appreciating spectacular natural scenery. This is one of the only complete 19th-century lighthouses in California that is open for public visits. Climb to the top of Point Sur Lighthouse for impressive views, visit the keeper’s quarters and learn about its history and legends.

Inaugurated in 1889, the lighthouse has since been guiding seafarers on a treacherous route along the Pacific Ocean. Gaze at the tall structure atop a 360-foot-tall (110-meter) rock on a headland in Point Sur State Historic Park. Families lived in the lighthouse until 1974, after which it became automated. Despite warnings from the beacon, several ships have run aground along this rocky coastline.

Join a volunteer-led tour of the lighthouse, which starts with an uphill walk along a paved road to the headland. Hear stories about the isolated lifestyle of the families who lived here and peek inside their lodgings. Find out about the shipwrecks and the factors that caused the ships to lose control. Listen to tales of the shipwrecked sailors who reputedly now haunt the lighthouse.

Climb the two staircases to reach the light room and observation deck. Marvel at the panoramic views of the craggy Pacific Ocean shoreline and the Santa Lucia Mountains. Spot gray whales on their migration route between December and April. Glimpse condors, eagles, pelicans and peregrine falcons. Watch as powerful waves break on the rocks and nearby beach.

The lighthouse is about a 15-minute drive north of Big Sur Village and a 50-minute drive from the city of Monterey. Use free parking at the base of the headland.

Tours of Point Sur Lighthouse take place year-round on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays and charge an admission fee. Moonlit tours are offered on select evenings from April to September. Visit the lighthouse’s official website for more information. Weather conditions here are variable so bring warm clothing.

Top things to do in Point Sur Lighthouse

Top Hotels Close to Point Sur Lighthouse

Big Sur Lodge
Big Sur Lodge
3 out of 5
47225 Highway One, Big Sur, CA
The price is $199 per night from Mar 9 to Mar 10

Situated near the beach, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Big Sur Station and Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. Big Sur Spirit Garden and Andrew Molera State Park ...

4/5Very Good! (422 reviews)

"The grounds surrounding the Big Sur lodge and cottage, are beautiful with all the redwood trees."…"

Reviewed on Feb 22, 2021

Big Sur Lodge
Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort - Adults Only
Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort - Adults Only
4.5 out of 5
48123 Highway One, Big Sur, CA
The price is $1,665 per night from Mar 23 to Mar 24

Situated by the ocean, this luxury resort is 0.9 mi (1.4 km) from Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park and 2 mi (3.2 km) from Big Sur Station. Andrew Molera State Park ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (327 reviews)

"The property is in an incredible setting. The facility itself is beautiful. It is, however, very expensive. The biggest drawback is the food. Very uneven in quality. Breakfasts are good, other food is mediocre. In spite of that, I had an amazing time."…"

Reviewed on Nov 30, 2020

Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort - Adults Only
Carmel Mission Inn
Carmel Mission Inn
3.5 out of 5
3665 Rio Rd, Carmel, CA
The price is $153 per night from Mar 9 to Mar 10

Situated near the airport, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of The Barnyard and Carmel Mission Basilica. Carmel Beach and 17-Mile Drive are also within ...

4.2/5Very Good! (979 reviews)

"Staff was great, rooms large and clean, lots of construction."…"

Reviewed on Feb 28, 2021

Carmel Mission Inn
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top Point Sur Lighthouse Flight + Hotel Deals

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Point Sur Lighthouse

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Best Lodging Options Near Point Sur Lighthouse

Big Sur Lodge
Big Sur Lodge
3 out of 5
47225 Highway One, Big Sur, CA
The price is $199 per night from Mar 9 to Mar 10
Big Sur Lodge
Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort - Adults Only
Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort - Adults Only
4.5 out of 5
48123 Highway One, Big Sur, CA
The price is $1,665 per night from Mar 23 to Mar 24
Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort - Adults Only
Carmel Mission Inn
Carmel Mission Inn
3.5 out of 5
3665 Rio Rd, Carmel, CA
The price is $153 per night from Mar 9 to Mar 10
Carmel Mission Inn
Hyatt Carmel Highlands, Overlooking Big Sur Coast
Hyatt Carmel Highlands, Overlooking Big Sur Coast
4 out of 5
120 Highland Dr, Carmel, CA
The price is $279 per night from Mar 9 to Mar 10
Hyatt Carmel Highlands, Overlooking Big Sur Coast
New! Craftsman Bungalow w/ Fire Pit & Ocean Views!
New! Craftsman Bungalow w/ Fire Pit & Ocean Views!
Carmel, CA
New! Craftsman Bungalow w/ Fire Pit & Ocean Views!
3794 Forever Views II ~ New Vacation Rental!  Expansive Ocean Views!
3794 Forever Views II ~ New Vacation Rental! Expansive Ocean Views!
Carmel, CA
3794 Forever Views II ~ New Vacation Rental! Expansive Ocean Views!
Ocean & Sunset view  retreat with hot tub
Ocean & Sunset view retreat with hot tub
Carmel, CA
Ocean & Sunset view retreat with hot tub
Sanctuary Retreat Offering Luxurious Social Distancing
Sanctuary Retreat Offering Luxurious Social Distancing
Carmel, CA
Sanctuary Retreat Offering Luxurious Social Distancing
Quail Lodge & Golf Club
Quail Lodge & Golf Club
5 out of 5
8205 VALLEY GREENS DRIVE, Carmel, CA
The price is $245 per night from Mar 9 to Mar 10
Quail Lodge & Golf Club
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.