Perched on the rocky coast of the Monterey Peninsula, Point Pinos Lighthouse is the oldest continuously operating lighthouse on the West Coast and is listed with the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
The lighthouse was first lit on Feb. 1, 1855, and is visible up to 17 miles out to sea. It has operated virtually nonstop for a span of 150-plus years. Over the years, 14 different lighthouse keepers stayed on site, but the lighthouse is now automated, eliminating the need for a live-in lighthouse keeper. The last keeper left the Point Pinos Lighthouse in 1975. The site remains an active “aid to navigation,” which means it’s still shining bright full-time and is operated by the United States Coast Guard.
The Point Pinos Lighthouse is located in the city of Pacific Grove. It is open Thursday through Monday from 1 to 4pm. No reservations are required to visit, and the cost is $2 for adults and $1 for kids. All funds are used for ongoing lighthouse restoration.