Point Pinos Lighthouse in Monterey

By Marianne Schwab | Best Travel Deals Tips Blog

The Point Pinos Lighthouse in Monterey, California, is the oldest, continuously operating lighthouse on the West Coast. It was first lit on February 1, 1855, and has been a beacon of light to Monterey Bay and the Pacific Grove area ever since.

When I was up in Monterey on an assignment, I took a day after the project was completed and rented a bike. I only had to ride about four or five miles from the center of town before I arrived at the Point Pinos Lighthouse that is technically just past Pacific Grove.

The lighthouse has the oldest Fresnel lens on the West Coast and it is one of four on the West Coast that still has the original lens in the original building.

This lighthouse has guided shipping along the rocky California coast for over 150 years. Mrs. Emily Fish was the most famous keeper (from 1893 to 1914) of the lighthouse and she was called the "Socialite Keeper" due to her love of entertaining guests there.

The lighthouse is open Thursday through Monday from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and docents are on duty or you can take a self guided tour as well.

There is a suggested donation of $2.00 for adults and $1.00 for children which goes toward the operating costs of the lighthouse and the preservation.

The preservation of this historic structure is partially funded through public and private donations. Donations are being used as part of a five year rehabilitation that began in 2007 and is scheduled to be completed by 2012 of the property that include budgets for the following:

Re-rooofing lighthouse: Cost estimate is $52,000.
Proposed for September 2008.

Re-painting lighthouse: Cost estimate is $89,0000.
Proposed for September 2010.

Window rehabilitation: Cost estimate is $86,000.
Proposed for September 2012.

Today, the lighthouse remains an official aid to navigation as well as a public museum. The Point Pinos Lighthouse in Monterey, California, is operated by the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History, located at 165 Forest Avenue in downtown Pacific Grove.

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About Marianne Schwab
TV Travel Show Producer

For over twenty years, TV Travel Show Producer, Marianne Schwab, has been collecting money saving travel tips as a travel producer for high profile television programs. She has flown all over the world and produced live television productions on location from Caesar's Palace on the Vegas Strip to the beautiful island of Oahu. Read more