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Macquarie Lightstation Tour (Watsons Bay)

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by Gypsy Rose (subscribe)
I love travelling, discovering hidden gems & food. Experience the journey on Instragram! @gypsy_compass. Owner of do check it out for grazing platters and more :)
Published July 9th 2018
Climb the stairs and be welcomed to breathtaking views
Constructed in 1818 and rebuilt in 1883, Macquarie Lightstation is the oldest and longest-serving lighthouse in Australia (still in operation today). And every two months opportunities to explore and learn about the history about this mighty Lightstation can be experienced.

Situated on the magnificent coast of Watsons Bay, this prominent Sydney landmark can be seen from the ocean and Sydney Harbour.

Every two months Macquarie Lightstation is open to the public with opportunities to explore and learn the history about this spectacular Lighthouse.

Every two months, the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust hold 20-minute guided tours which include discovering the fascinating history of this Lightstation as well as an opportunity to climb 100 stair-steps to the top and out to the balcony, where spectacular uninterrupted views of the harbour and Sydney city can be enjoyed.

The "waiting room

Macquarie Lighthouse was originally designed by convict architect Francis Greenway, which was commenced in 1816 and finished in 1818, during which time Francis Greenway was given his freedom as Governor Macquarie was so pleased with the lighthouse.

The Museum features informative and interesting information about Macquarie Lightstation & other Lighthouses as well as showcasing artefacts.

Sadly, the first lighthouse fell in despair as the locally-sourced sandstone used to build the tower began to erode and the tower was then held together with iron hoops before being replaced with a new tower.

The Lightstation is home to 100 steps!

In 1883 the white-painted lighthouse was replaced. The new Lightstation was designed by James Barnett and resembled the original. For a short time, both towers stood side-to-side before the original was demolished.

An amazing view from one of the windows inside the Lightstation.

Quarters were built in the 1880s for the head keeper, engineer and other Lightstation staff and today some of these spectacular structures still stand!

The door to the balcony is extremely low... watch your head!

The Lightstation was powered by a number of oil lamps that revolved using a weight system and in 1976, it became a fully automated light. Today, this amazing Lighthouse is still used for its original purpose; a guiding light for sailors showing the way to the harbour entrance.

One of the most indisputable and breathtaking views can be seen from the balcony at the Lightstation.

The Tour takes you up the 100 steps to the top of the Lighthouse Tower, as you walk up the stairs you will notice the different shapes of windows, from arched to circle to square and each window offers a completely different view.

One of, if not the best views of Sydney city and its wonderful surroundings can be seen from the balcony at the Lightstation too.

Once you have reached the top, you will be welcomed to the opportunity to go out to the balcony where an undisputed and complete panorama view of the Sydney area can be seen.

Everywhere you look, there are awe-inspiring views to be admired.

The Tour not only allows you to explore and experience inside Macquarie Lightstation it also takes you into the history - from the lighthouses position to the construction and the stories about first lighthouse keeper Robert Watson, who Watsons Bay was named after!

Admiring the views.

Exploring the grounds around the Lightstation is free and is open all year round. It is part of the Great Coastal Walk and makes a wonderful picnic and relaxing setting.

Spectacular views can be seen from the Lantern Room (at the top of the Lighthouse) as well as close up views of the mighty Lamp & Lens

Tours depart between 10am and 4 pm and are approximately 20 minutes.

Ticket Fees:

Adults: $5pp
Children & Concession: $3pp
Family (2 adults 2 children): $13 per family.

Tickets can be purchased online or at the Lightstation on the day of the tour.

The Lamp & Lens can be seen on this Tour!

Next Tour will be held on Sunday 19 August 2018 for the International Lighthouse Heritage Weekend and bookings and ticket purchases can be made from 1st August 2018.

Don't look down if you are afraid of heights!

Tours are held every two months- see website for next Tour dates.

Do note that a good level of mobility is required, with an ability to walk up 100 stair steps and not be affected by heights. If conditions are too windy, access to the balcony will not be possible and will be determined by the guides on the day.

Large bags and items must be left on ground level.

There a endless views to admire from the balcony.
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Why? Explore a piece of history with breathtaking views
When: Every two months
Where: Macquarie Road, Vaucluse
Cost: Adults: $5pp, Children: $3pp & Family (2 adults 2 kids): $15
Your Comment
I love outings like this!
by Elaine (score: 3|8301) 1118 days ago
Me too! They are wonderful. Thank you, Elaine :)
by Gypsy Rose (score: 2|747) 1118 days ago
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