Barrenjoey Lighthouse, Palm Beach

#1 of 25 in Historic Sites in Greater Sydney
Lighthouse · Tourist Spot
The Barrenjoey Head lighthouse was the third light constructed on the headland in the Northern Beaches district of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. The heritage-listed lighthouse was completed in 1881.
Designed by NSW colonial architect James Barnet, its construction cost £13,695, plus £2,210 for the lamp. At an elevation of, it is visible to a distance of out to sea.
A customs station was established in 1843, as the Headland marked the entrance to Broken Bay and Pittwater – considered to be the back door to Sydney for smugglers. The first report of any lighted beacon on the headland was in 1855, when a fire was raised in a basket to assist mariners during storms. Broken Bay and the Pittwater were a safe haven in storms to vessels carrying coal from Newcastle to Sydney. Similarly, barges carrying food down the Hawkesbury River were a key food source for Sydney, and would harbour in the bay, awaiting favourable weather before making the 14km journey to Sydney.
Later, in 1868, two wooden lighthouses known as the Stewart Towers, were built at either end of the headland to guide ships in. The need for a permanent light led to the construction of the current lighthouse.
The current tower is unpainted, and built of the rich-coloured local sandstone. The original lighting apparatus was a fixed red dioptric of 700 candlepower with 4 oil wick burners. In 1900, an explosion followed by a fire destroyed the ornamental roof on the adjacent oil house. The flames were subdued before reaching the tower.
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Barrenjoey Lighthouse reviews

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259 reviews
  • There are no clear signs. The way to the top means you have to bash the bushes and make your own way as there are no clear marked paths. Views ok.  more »
  • Really enjoyed the walk along the winding path. Estimated to take 15 minutes, took us 1 hour. We stopped to enjoy the seascapes and views. Highly recommend. Steep, wear closed toe shoes, stop and...  more »
  • Amazing beautiful one day trip to palm beach. It’s short hiking kind of walk towards the Barrenjoey Lighthouse. You have got lots of beautiful spot to click your pictures with background of long shore lines and as well get some of beautiful scenic shots too. And if you wish to get a bit into the bush and climb few rocks, you might find this hike more charming. According to me, journey is always more admirable than the destination, and here is another example to it, whole journey you have a lot and lots of scenes to cover. Wear some really comfy shoes to hike that uphill. Find a good spot, and sit with your family, love or friends, and enjoy this beautiful place on a sunny or cloudy day. Moreover, if you could find your way to some high stone, you might be able to see whole view of Lion island to palm beach to Barrenjoey Lighthouse. Stay safe. Be travelling. Travel Octopus it is. ✌️
  • Great hike on the Northern beaches of Sydney. Pay for all day parking at nearby Palm beach so that you can take your time exploring the local area. There are 2 different trails heading to the top of the head and the Barrenjoey lighthouse. The nearest amenities are in the car park at Palm beach so ensure you pack plenty of water for the steep trail. Sweeping views of the beaches, ocean and Broken Bay await you.

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