Portland Breakwater Lighthouse

Portland Breakwater Lighthouse

Portland Breakwater Lighthouse
4.5
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Unusual lighthouse designed after Greek monuments.
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles154 reviews
Excellent
87
Very good
56
Average
11
Poor
0
Terrible
0

Jessica P
Jacksonville, FL43 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2022 • Couples
Nice area by the water. You can walk right up to the little lighthouse. Lots of boats going by. We were there on a Sunday and there were lots of people flying kites, riding bikes around, walking their dogs, etc.
Written 18 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Carrie D.
Cleveland, OH2,295 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
July 2022
One afternoon, while vacationing in Saco, Maine, my parents and I decided to visit a few of the local lighthouses. This was the first one we stopped at and we were charmed by this little lighthouse. It's near the famous Portland Head Lighthouse and definitely worth the side trip. It's smaller and less overall dramatic than Portland Head Light, but sweet and charming in it's own way. And it had really great views of Portland, too.

And as an added bonus, parking was free! There's also a small house that includes a visitor center and gift shop on the way into the parking area.
Written 7 August 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Maltipoo16
New York1,794 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2021 • Family
Even with some showers, this lighthouse is still beautiful. The park leading up is beautiful as well. There was an amazing view of the water and surrounding area once you reached the lighthouse after a short walk from the parking lot.
Written 17 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jbrenz
Chicago, IL1,572 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022 • Friends
Beautiful little lighthouse and park. Could see Fort Gorges from shore, too. Very clean park that is also dog friendly. Pretty little spot to picnic or just pass some time with some gorgeous views!
Written 12 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Cherry_Wonderdog
New England4,688 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2014 • Family
Very charming little light house from the 19th century that’s on the list of USA historic places. There’s a short walk along the water along with a big open green space for running with dogs and kids. I could definitely see this place as a thriving metropolis of kite flyers during the summer.

There’s far less walking to be had as compared to the Portland Head Lighthouse, and the setting is less dramatic, but it’s still worth seeing, especially if you’re a softy for lighthouses in Maine.
Written 2 January 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Maurene_K
Dover, NH12,116 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
July 2014 • Friends
THESE PHOTOS ARE OF THE CORRECT LIGHTHOUSE.
Believe me. I've been here too many times to count.
The BREAKWATER is CONCEALED BEHIND THE BIG SIGN that says PORTLAND BREAKWATER LIGHTHOUSE. One can read it in the photo.

Portland Breakwater Lighthouse is located in Bug Light Park at the end of Madison Avenue.

The lighthouse was first built as a wooden structure in 1855. The current tower was built in 1875 with sections of cast iron and lined with brick. Its design was modeled after the Choragic Monument of Lysicrates in Athens. It has six decorative Corinthian columns that cover the seams of the sections. It is one of Maine’s prettiest lighthouses.

It was built here to warn of shoals and a breakwater that later all but disappeared as adjacent shipyards expanded during World War II. It was deactivated in 1942. Its function as a navigational aid is past.

Properties:
Tower Height: 26 feet
Height of Focal Plane: 30 feet
Original Optic: Sixth order Fresnel lens
Present optic: 250 mm lens
Characteristic: Flashes white every 4 seconds

The lighthouse is owned and operated by the City of South Portland.

There is ample free parking near the lighthouse along the waterfront at Bug Light Park.

At the other end of the park is Liberty Ship Memorial which celebrates this land’s history as shipyards that built Liberty Ships from 1941 to 1945 during World War II. It is worth a visit.

For me and two friends, no trip to the Greater Portland area is complete without a visit to Bug Light Park, Portland Breakwater Lighthouse a/k/a Bug Light, and several other lighthouses within a few miles. On our most-recent visit we happened to arrive just a few minutes before the Portland Schooner Company’s 66-foot schooner Bagheera was returning from a two-hour sail. That made a great addition to photos of Bug Light.

Casco Bay Lines ferries passengers to and around the islands of Casco Bay. It seems that one of their distinctive ferries with a white top and yellow bottom passes by every 15 minutes on its way in and out of nearby Portland Harbor. They will make colorful additions to your photos of the lighthouse and nearby Fort Gorges.

BRING YOUR CAMERA and BINOCULARS.

Most parts of Bug Light Park are wheelchair accessible. Someone in a wheelchair can see everything in the park. The parking lot and walkway along the shore over to Bug Light are paved and pretty level. The granite blocks on the walkway along the breakwater have uneven surfaces so getting right up to the lighthouse may not be feasible, but one can certainly get close enough to see and appreciate the details of its design.

Spring Point Ledge Light, Fort Preble, and Portland Harbor Museum are about 1+ miles away in South Portland. Portland Head Light in Fort Williams Park, Cape Elizabeth Light (a/k/a Two Lights), Two Lights State Park, and Crescent Beach State Park---all in Cape Elizabeth---are just minutes away. And, Portland's Old Port and downtown areas are only about 15 minutes away.

During our most-recent visit, we actually did it all on a full daytrip that lasted from morning until 7:00 PM with stops for lunch and a quick, light supper. But, we've been here several times before.

Visiting all these places could become a three-day weekend trip for out-of-staters.

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Written 23 July 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

fefa1986
Seattle, WA435 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2020 • Friends
I am a sucker for lighthouse! This one is not a huge one but it’s truly amazing ! I got lucky that there was not too many people so I could get some nice pic!!!! Very lovely place !!!! Has free parking !!!
Written 16 September 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jim M
Fruit Cove, FL109 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
July 2018 • Couples
Had a great walk on the quay to/ from the lighthouse. The lighthouse is in good repair, and makes an excellent subject for pictures. There are great views of harbor, from this location. Visit in the morning or late afternoon, as there is no shade or rest areas.

Plenty of parking is available.

Stamps for lighthouse visits [for Lighthouse Passport fanatics] can be obtained at the South Portland Historical Society Museum, located near “Bug Light” Park
Written 16 July 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

bob b
Tampa, FL69 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018
My wife and I visited three of the lighthouses in the Portland area. Compared to Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse it is easy to get up close to this one without having to navigate jagged rocks. All three of the area lighthouses (including Portland Head Light) are attractive and great for photography. All three are also surrounded by wonderful parks, open to the public.
Written 16 May 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Maineguy0001
Maine61 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2014 • Friends
The Portland Breakwater Lighthouse is a great place to go look at Portland itself and the harbor. A wonderful place for a family visit or even for couples to walk or sit hand in hand. Pick up a Bella Terra Maine Lighthouses Illustrated Map & Guide to find other great lighthouses in the area.
Written 2 December 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Portland Breakwater Lighthouse - All You MUST Know Before You Go (2024)

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