Lighthouse Experience

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A tour at Valentia Lighthouse is a journey through time. Here’s some of what you will experience during your visit.

Glanleam Standing Stone on the site of Valentia Island Lioghthouse

Glanleam Standing Stone

Standing stones date back to the Bronze Age (2000BC to 500BC) and they are a curiosity, as their function is not entirely known. It is believed they were erected for rituals and other ceremonies, to mark boundaries or to commemorate an important person. They are also known in Ireland as menhir, gallán or dallán.

17th Century Military Fort

This medieval Cromwellian fort was built in 1653 to defend the entrance to Valentia Harbour. The fort layout consists of two parts: the earthen star-shaped fort and a very well-preserved Blockhouse laid on the rocky shore. Later, in 1837, the Lighthouse tower was built inside the Blockhouse.
17th Century Fort @ Valentia Island Lighthouse

Lightkeeper's Dwelling House

Museum and Tearooms

The Lightkeeper’s Dwelling House is an asymmetrical stone and concrete building erected in 1910. A small sheltered room for a former water tank stands above the porch. The last lightkeeper, Harry Staniforth, his wife Margaret and his two daughters, Geraldine and Margaret, were the last residents of this house until the lighthouse was automated in 1947. The house is now fully restored as a museum and the former kitchen hosts our tearooms.

The Lighthouse

This harbour light guides vessels from the North Atlantic and leads them through the northern entrance of Valentia Harbour. The light was first applied for on 30th of March 1828 by the Knight of Kerry. Works began in April 1837 and the light was first exhibited on the 1st of February 1841. The tower is of cut stone – it stands 15 metres high and the views from its balcony are breath-taking. This is still a full functioning Lighthouse safeguarding the waters that flow ’round Valentia.

There is much more to enjoy on site! We look forward to welcoming you to Valentia Island Lighthouse!