gem icon Point Bonita Lighthouse

4 votes


As the 1848 Gold Rush brought a population boom to California, the city of San Francisco quickly recognized the necessity of guiding steamships into her harbor safely. A system of lighthouses was developed, and in 1855 the Point Bonita Lighthouse was completed. As the 3rd lighthouse operating on the West Coast, Point Bonita brought many ships safely to the city. During the first years of operation, many sailors criticized the location of the lighthouse. The original location placed the lighthouse 300 feet above the sea, and the beam was often obscured by dense fog. By 1877, the lighthouse had been moved to it's current location, where it is still in operation today.

Due to the functional nature of the lighthouse, the tunnel leading halfway to the Point Bonita Lighthouse is only open during visitor hours: Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Visiting the lighthouse not only provides a sense of San Francisco's history, but the location also showcases incredible views of the Bay Area. If you're going to be in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, the Point Bonita Lighthouse is a must-see stopping point for any visitors.

Short Walk: To reach the Point Bonita Lighthouse, visitors complete a 1/2 mile hike that is steep and somewhat strenuous in places.

Family Friendly: The lighthouse is located close to parking areas, and provides captivating views and history for developing minds.

Gem Type: Historic Site

Shared by:
Mikhaila Redovian


Rate Gem


4.8 from 4 votes

Your Check-Ins


Aug 31, 2016
Lenka Richterov√°
Aug 13, 2016
Jun Song
Closed to access lighthouse for construction. Open Saturday, Sunday and Monday
Jul 2, 2016
Caleb Mayfield
Jul 1, 2016
Frances Parmelee
got lucky and got to see the lighthouse even though it was closed to the public.
Mar 18, 2016
Mar 6, 2016
Jun Song

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Shared by Mikhaila Redovian on Oct 27, 2015. All Page Views: 448. Last Month: 97.