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Ardnamurchan Lighthouse
and Museum


Featured Location Guide

Aerial Photo Marinas.com (more images available)

At the most westerly point on the British mainland, on the Ardnamurchan Peninsula is the Ardnamurchan Lighthouse. It has been guiding ships through the waters off Scotland’s west coast since 1849.

Ardnamurchan Lighthouse is a 36 metre tall, pink granite tower lighthouse built in 1849. It is the only lighthouse built in the Egyptian style, and the granite came from the Island of Mull. It was built by Alan Stevenson, uncle to Robert Louis Stevenson, the author of the book "Treasure Island".

Two light keepers were appointed to look after the light and as well as getting an annual allowance of £18, they also kept two cows and about a dozen sheep.

One morning in January 1852 there was a severe storm and lightning struck the tower causing broken panes and plaster to come off the walls. Fifty feet of boundary wall was knocked down and 40 feet of road was washed away by the heavy seas. The keepers boat was broken up, although they had secured it 15 feet above the last known high water mark.

The lighthouse was automated in 1988 and is still working today although the surrounding buildings have been sold off.

Photo by Chris Wimbush

Visitors Centre

The light keepers cottages and outbuildings are owned by the Ardnamurchan Lighthouse Trust who operate them as a visitor centre with a museum called the 'Kingdom of Light', with exhibits detailing the history and operations of the lighthouse. They also provide access to the restored engine room and workshop with the original fog horn. Other displays include the geology and natural history of the area, flora and fauna of the peninsula and local social history and culture.

Tours of the lighthouse tower take place during the summer months, unless essential maintenance work is taking place. The first guided tour starts at 11am and they continue every half hour up to 4.30pm. If you don't have the energy to go to the top of the tower than they have a viewing platform by the original air-powered fog horn, which is a well established whale and dolphin watching area.

Most roads in Ardnamurchan are single track, with passing places. You must use these passing places when you encounter oncoming traffic, and to allow overtaking by faster vehicles. Also keep an eye out for livestock and wildlife which also use these roads.

Lighthouse information Grid


Ardnamurchan Lighthouse and Museum, Argyllshire

Current status:


Geographic Position:

56° 43.630'N  006° 13.567'W

Grid Reference:


Ceremonial County:



Grey granite tower with 152 steps to the top of the tower attached to 1 storey keeper's house

Map Link:


Aerial photo:


Other photos:


Originally built:


Current lighthouse built:


Height of Tower:

35 metres

Height of light above mean sea level:

55 metres

Character of light:

Flashing (2) White every 20 Secs

Character of fog signal:


Range of light:

24 nautical miles

How powered:


Owned / run by:

Northern Lighthouse Board


Trust - Main Visitor site     Open detail

Other Useful Websites:

Wikipedia     NLB      Ardnamurchan Leaflet

Ardnamurchan Peninsula






Lighthouse Visit Planning Grid


Ardnamurchan Lighthouse and Museum, Argyllshire

Grid Reference: NM416674
Getting there: From the A861 at Salen, take the B8007 to Kilchoan. At the end of the village turn right and follow the signs to the lighthouse. An alternative way of getting to Kilchoan is via the ferry from Tobermory on the Isle of Mull.
Access: The tower has 152 steps and two ladders. Max 8 people at a time on tours. Site open, buildings open daily April through October, tower open to guided tours.




The Lighthouse

Ardnamurchan Point





PH36 4LN


01972 510210


Opening times:

Everyday from Easter or 1st April until 31st October 10am-5pm.


Tower Adults £5, Seniors and Child (<16) £3,
Family (4 persons) £14

Best Times to Visit: Summer


Exhibition centre, keepers cottage, coffee shop

Things To Do, See and Photograph:

From the lighthouse views, lighthouse and accompanying buildings, wildlife

What to take:


Nature highlights:

Whales and Dolphins, flora and forna, Livestock and wild animals, including red deer, wander freely the road.

Photo Restrictions:


Other Restrictions: Children Under 5 not allowed in lighthouse tower
Nearby Locations:  
Other Relevant pages:

For more articles, lists and other information see the Lighthouses Section

Lighthouse Map of Scotland

Featured List of lighthouses - Scotland 

List of minor lighthouses and lights - Scotland  

Please let us know any other information that we can add to the Further information and Planning Grids or page and any errors that you discover. Before making a long trip to any location it is always wise to double check the current information, websites like magazines may be correct at the time the information is written, but things change and it is of course impossible to double check all entries on a regular basis. If you have any good photographs that you feel would improve the illustration of this page then please let us have copies. In referring to this page it is helpful if you quote both the Page Ref and Topic or Section references from the Grid below. To print the planning grid select it then right click and print the selected area.

Please submit information on locations you discover so that this system continues to grow.


By:  Tracey Park   Section: Lighthouses Key:
Page Ref: Ardnamurchan Topic: Lighthouses Last Updated: 06/2010


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