[Cape Hatteras Lighthouse] More Outer Banks Lighthouses:
Bodie Island

At the southern tip of Hatteras Island is the majestic Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. As the story goes, founding father Alexander Hamilton, the nation's first Secretary of Treasury, became so sick and afraid as he made his way around the pitch black cape in a storm tossed ship as a child that he vowed, if he ever amounted to anything in our country, he would see to it that a lighthouse would be built on that very spot. Hamilton fulfilled his promise, and a lighthouse was built in 1802.

The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse you see today, built between 1869-70, was a replacement after the first lighthouse fell victim to erosion. It is the most recognized, photographed, painted, read about and admired lighthouse in North America. It is the signature of America's maritime history, and the symbol of the United States Lighthouse Service. This 198 ft. structure is located on Cape Point in Buxton. If you're up to climbing its 268 steps, you'll be rewarded with a beautiful view of the island and it's beaches.

The physical moving of the lighthouse was completed on July 9, 1999 with the last brick of the brick foundation being placed at 3:33 PM on Tuesday, September 14th.

[Hatteras Lighthouse]
Visitors may climb the 268 steps to the top of the structure.

The public visitation season for the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is from approximately the Friday before Easter Sunday to Columbus Day each year. Lighthouse tours will begin at 9 a.m. daily and will run every 10 minutes with a limit of 30 visitors per tour. The last tour will be at 4:40 p.m. Memorial Day through Labor Day the last tour will be at 5:40 p.m. Tour fees are $6.00 for adults and $3.00 for senior citizens (62 or older), children (12 and under), and those holding Golden Access passes.

Upon purchase, each visitor will receive a ticket indicating the date and time of their tour. Visitors should line up at the lighthouse gate five minutes before their tour time and present their tickets for entry.

The ticket booth at the lighthouse will open at 8:15 a.m. daily. Tickets will be available on a first come, first served basis and are only available at the ticket booth on site. Tickets are only available for the day of purchase. Advance ticket sales are not available to the public or commercial tours. Tours will likely sell out by noon each day, so visitors should plan to arrive early to purchase their tickets. The lighthouse may close at any time if weather conditions are unsafe for public visitation.


$6.00/Climb Adults
$3.00/Climb Child
$3.00/Climb 62 and older

[Currituck Lighthouse] The Currituck Beach Lighthouse, built in 1875, is the northernmost lighthouse on the Outer Banks. The 163-foot structure is open to the public 10am to 6pm from Easter through Thanksgiving weekend. For a $6 fee you can climb the 212 steps to the top for a panoramic view of the Currituck Sound and the historic Whalehead Club. The recently restored keeper's quarters and "wild horse" enclosure are located on the grounds. A rate of $3 per person ($2 each for school groups) is available for tour groups that make advance arrangements. The fee applies to everyone in the group, whether or not they climb the lighthouse. For information call 252.453.4939.

For more information on the Currituck Beach Lighthouse please visit their web page at: http://www.currituckbeachlight.com

The Bodie Island Lighthouse (pronounced "body"), sister of the Currituck Lighthouse, was built in 1872 and is 150 ft tall. Located six miles south of Whalebone Junction, visitors can explore the scenic grounds all year round and browse through the visitors center - visitor center hours are 9am - 6pm in summer, 9am - 5 pm rest of year. The magnificent first order Fresnel lens may be seen flashing its warning each night. Pieces of the original Cape Hatteras first order lens and an exhibit about lighthouse families can be seen at the visitor's center in the double keeper's house at the Bodie Island Lighthouse. Climbing the stairs is not permitted for safety reasons. For information call 252.441.5711. [Bodie Island Lighthouse]

[Ocracoke Lighthouse] The Ocracoke Lighthouse, built in 1823, is the southernmost lighthouse on the Outer Banks. To get to the Ocracoke Lighthouse, drive south on NC 12 to the town of Hatteras; then take the free ferry (40 minute ride) over to the island. The town of Ocracoke and it's lighthouse are 14 miles further south on NC 12. Visitors are allowed to park and walk to the base. The Ocracoke Light is slightly off center and crooked - you're eyes aren't deceiving you! Behind the light is a fascinating small cemetary. The 75-foot lighthouse is currently operated by the Coast Guard and is not open to the public, but you may stop by the visitors center near the ferry terminal - now open year-round, except December 25. For information call 252.928.4531.

*All photographs courtesy of Dare County Tourist Bureau*

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