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The Guide To Visiting The St. George Island Lighthouse

Situated along the Gulf Coast Florida panhandle, St. George Island offers a remote beach retreat for small groups and families. The island offers a sleepy feel with a slower pace than other Florida beach destinations, like Daytona Beach or Panama City. You’ll truly be able to embrace ‘Island Time’ at St. George!

 

What the island lacks in big tourist attractions it more than makes up for in small town charm, fantastic local dining, and unique local landmarks. The St. George lighthouse, in particular, is a popular draw on the island.

 

Centrally located, the lighthouse is a true beacon of the community. Originally constructed in the 1800s, the lighthouse has a rich history and has been an important landmark for almost 200 years.

Lighthouse History

The original St. George Island was constructed in 1833 and stood 65 feet tall. The location was intentional—it marked the narrow entrance to the Apalachicola Bay to direct boats between St George Island and St. Vincent Island. At the time, the bay was an important port for cotton distribution, so access was essential to the local economy.

 

The lighthouse took substantial damage from a hurricane in 1851 and was rebuilt and re-enforced many times over the next 100+ years. The power source was converted to mineral oil in 1882 and then to incandescent oil vapor in 1913. The light was automated in 1949 and the light was temporarily decommissioned in 1994.

 

Local and government fundraising efforts were completed in the early 2000s to improve and re-open the lighthouse, though prior damage caused the lighthouse to collapse on October 22, 2005.

 

From there, island volunteers formed the official St. George Light Association to reconstruct the lighthouse on a more secure site. The group was able to secure over $500,000 of government grants to aid in the effort.

The Current Lighthouse

Today, the lighthouse is fully functional and features a history museum and gift shop. It stands at 72 feet tall and is open to the public throughout the year, though hours of operation vary seasonally. It’s also interesting to note that the current lighthouse is the fourth iteration, but the current version does contain bricks and elements from the original structure from the 1800s.

Visiting The Lighthouse

The lighthouse has seasonal hours. Current hours are as follows:

 

Summer Hours: March 1st – October 31st

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Sunday: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Thursday: Closed

 

Winter Hours: November 1st – February 28th

  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Thursday: Closed

Climbing Fees:

  • Adults: $5
  • Youth (age 16-7): $3
  • Children (6 and under): Free

Members of the St. George Lighthouse Association, Florida Lighthouse Association, St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum, and Active Military Personnel with ID are admitted free of charge.

Group rates are also available.

The lighthouse museum and gift shop are free to enter.

Please note that lighthouse visitors must be at least 40 inches tall and able to climb the 92 wooden stairs to enter the climb.

Pets are not allowed in the lighthouse, museum, or gift shop.

 

St. George Island Lighthouse Full Moon Club

Photo credit: Fickling Vacation Rentals

Though beaches are typically known for amazing sunrises or sunsets, there’s something special about a full moon at the beach. Experience a one-of-a-kind event by scheduling your beach trip during a full moon. Each month, visitors and locals climb the lighthouse to mingle and munch on snacks while they toast with sparkling cider under the full moon. This unique event is perfect for couples or families and can be enjoyed for only $15 ($10 for Lighthouse Association members). Because this event only happens once a month, reservations are recommended. You can save your spot by calling the Lighthouse Gift Shop at (850) 927-7745.

 

Vacation Rentals Within Walking Distance of The Lighthouse

An early morning or evening stroll to the lighthouse is a great way to start or end your days at the beach! We offer several St. George Island vacation rentals that are just a short walk from the lighthouse. Here are three of our most popular listings:

 

One St. George 303

112 Franklin Blvd., St, George Island, FL 32328

 

Located in the heart of St. George Island, this charming condo features 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, and can accommodate up to 6 guests. The updated rental actually overlooks the Gulf of Mexico and the lighthouse and is centrally located near local entertainment and dining. Learn more here.

Village St. George #D3

200 W. Gorrie Dr., St. George Island, FL 23238

 

Located just south of the lighthouse, this beach view condo offers 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and can accommodate 6 guests. This rental features a poolside balcony, which will make it easy to keep an eye on little ones as you enjoy the stunning beach views. Learn more here.

Diamond Beach

616 E. Gorrie Dr., St. George Island, FL 32328

 

Traveling with a crowd? If so, this spacious oceanfront vacation rental is for you! Diamond Beach offers 5 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms, and can comfortably accommodate 14 guests. Bask in luxury with an expansive oceanfront deck, outdoor dining space, and a private pool. Learn more here.

 

Visiting the St. George Island lighthouse is an annual tradition for many—and it’s not hard to see why! This beautiful local landmark offers a way to embrace with the rich island history and to build a stronger connection with a what is sure to become your favorite beach destination.

 

The St. George Island lighthouse is just one of the island’s charming local attractions. Be sure to visit our ‘Things To Do’ guide for more beach itinerary ideas and visit our specials page to start planning your beach retreat!