Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse & Museum
4931 S Peninsula Dr. Ponce Inlet, Ponce Inlet, FL, USA
Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse & Museum Ponce Inlet Reviews
Florida's tallest lighthouse Feb 22, 2014
Located just 10 miles/16 kilometers south of Daytona Beach, the Ponce Inlet Light Station is one of the largest and best preserved lighthouses in the United States. Open to the public the whole year round, it is 175 feet (53 meters) of family fun in the Florida sun! Although when we were there, which was the day after Christmas 2013, it was windy and a bit chilly.
Built in 1887 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1998, the lighthouse is one of the few light stations in the country that still possesses all of its original keepers' dwellings and out-buildings. You can discover what turn-of-the-century life was like for the station's former keepers and families. One can also find out the unique history of lighthouse illumination as you tour the various buildings surrounding the lighthouse.
Admission to the main office is free, but if you want to climb up to the top of the lighthouse (which I did) the fee is $5.00 which I thought was very reasonable as all proceeds and admission fees are used for the restoration, preservation and maintenance of this national landmark. You can also opt for a personal guided tour by paying extra charges. Even if one doesn't take the guided tour, the $5.00 is still a bargain as you get your money's worth.
As I needed the exercise, I climbed the 203 steps all the way to the top (with a couple of rest stops) and enjoyed breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean, beach and coastal wetlands. But, I should give you fair warning that if you're afraid of heights I would not recommend the long climb. The descent can also be a bit scary, looking down the narrow winding stairs. However, you can still tour the several buildings and museums below, with its mini-displays, exhibits and old photos.
If you're interested in history, then this place is definitely worth a visit. The property and grounds are very well kept with adequate restrooms (very important!) There is also a nature trail which looks like quite a nice walk although I didn't do it. Plus, the usual gift shop which sells quaint souvenirs and curios, educational items and informative books.
We spent a pleasant afternoon at Ponce Inlet. If you're not into touring lighthouses, the place is not far from Daytona Beach, so if you get bored, don't despair....you can always pop along to the beach or take a tour of the International Speedway which I've already posted on here separately.
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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