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Spotlighting Lighthouses

Today is National Lighthouse Day and in honor of these lifesaving and often scenic attractions, we’ve combed through our IndependentTraveler.com boards to find out which lighthouses our readers have been most impressed with.

In no particular order here are five lighthouses you may never have heard of, but our readers recommend you visit.

Point Reyes Lighthouse, San Francisco Bay area

The light house on Point Reyes has been a lifesaver for mariners trying to some of the windiest and foggiest waters on their way into the San Francisco Bay since 1870. Now retired from service, the lighthouse is a museum in which the era of the lightkeeper is preserved.

Tybee Island Light Station, Georgia

Though the current building only dates back to 1916, the original lighthouse was built in 1732. Sitting on a five-acre piece of land the light station guides ships into the Savannah River. Visitors can go inside and climb the 178 stops to the top for stunning views.

Gibbs Hill Lighthouse, Bermuda

Not only is Gibbs Hill Lighthouse the tallest lighthouse on Bermuda, the hill on which its located is one of the highest points as well. So whether you brave the 185 steps to the top or not, you’ll still get a wonderful vista of the island on your visit there.

Celarain Lighthouse, Cozumel

Located in the Punta Sur Park, a 247-acre ecological park, the lighthouse is part of a nautical museum that can be visited via park-run tours. Inside the structure you can climb some 130 steps to the observation deck.

Blockhouse Point Lighthouse, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

While you can’t actually go inside this lighthouse, built in 1851, its location offers a wonderful view of the harbor. But if you peek in the ground floor windows you should be able to see parts of the kitchen, parlor and two bedrooms.

— written by Dori Saltzman

By Sarah Schlichter

Deputy Executive Editor Sarah Schlichter's idea of a perfect trip includes spotting exotic animals, hiking through pristine landscapes, exploring new neighborhoods on foot, and soaking up as much art as she can. She often attempts to recreate recipes from her international travels after she gets home (which has twice resulted in accidental kitchen fires—no humans or animals were harmed).

Sarah joined the SmarterTravel team in 2017 after more than a decade at the helm of IndependentTraveler.com. Sarah's practical travel advice has been featured in dozens of news outlets including the New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, USA Today, Budget Travel, and Peter Greenberg Worldwide Radio. Follow her on Twitter @TravelEditor.

The Handy Item I Always Pack: "A journal. Even years later, reading my notes from a trip can bring back incredibly vivid memories."

Ultimate Bucket List Experience: "Road tripping and hiking through the rugged mountains of Patagonia."

Travel Motto: "'To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world.'—Freya Stark"

Aisle, Window, or Middle Seat: "Aisle. I get restless on long flights and like to be able to move around without disturbing anyone else."

Email Sarah at sschlichter@smartertravel.com.

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