There's a unique, rugged romance about lighthouses that few other structures, or dwellings, can match. And while not all of the world's lighthouses allow guests to spend the night inside or on the grounds, many others — from the spartan to the luxurious — certainly do. Let's visit some of the most charming.

Stunning Lighthouse Inns and B&Bs

Ever dream of spending the night in a lighthouse? So do we.

There's a unique, rugged romance about lighthouses that few other structures, or dwellings, can match. And while not all of the world's lighthouses allow guests to spend the night inside or on the grounds, many others — from the spartan to the luxurious — certainly do. Let's visit some of the most charming. ROSE ISLAND Buyenlarge/Getty Images ROSE ISLAND Rose Island, off of Newport, Rhode Island, is only about 18 acres, but it's a place of remarkable natural beauty year-round. Don't count on heading into Newport for a meal and back (this is an island, after all) but consider catching your own dinner by fishing for striped bass, bluefish, and tautog from the rocks by the lighthouse. MOLJA LIGHTHOUSE Nick Pedersen MOLJA LIGHTHOUSE One of the coolest lighthouse experiences on the planet can be found in the harbor town of Alesund, Norway. The Molja Lighthouse is part of the boutique Hotel Brosundet, but it sits on its own at the end of a pier and features a single tiny room — No. 47, just 10 feet in diameter — with killer views.

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BIG BAY POINT Henryk Sadura BIG BAY POINT Big Bay Point Lighthouse Bed and Breakfast sits on a cliff above majestic Lake Superior, and the lighthouse itself is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The light was automated in 1941, but it still guides sailors navigating the great lake's shoreline in all weather. GATEWAY TO THE CONTINENT Bruno Perousse GATEWAY TO THE CONTINENT Roughly 100 miles from Quebec City on the storied St. Lawrence River lucky travelers will find the Pot à l'Eau-de-Vie inn and lighthouse — a cozy retreat at "the gateway to the continent." BELLE TOUT Paul Thompson BELLE TOUT One could search long and hard for a more dramatic place to spend a night or two than the Belle Tout Lighthouse B&B atop the towering chalk cliffs in East Sussex, England. The lighthouse has been decommissioned, but the largely undeveloped coastline here is as beautiful as any in this part of the world — and that's saying something. RACE POINT Susan Candelario RACE POINT The famous Race Point Lighthouse in Provincetown, Mass., offers two buildings, the Keeper's house and the Whistle house (the latter can sleep up to eight), both with central heating, electricity, and hot running water. ON THE BOLD COAST Photo by Michael Russell ON THE BOLD COAST Little River Island, situated at the entrance to Cutler Harbor in Maine, is one of many small jewels of the state's famed "Bold Coast." In 1876 the island's original stone-tower lighthouse was torn down and replaced with the brick-lined, cast iron tower that stands sentinel today. STAR TRAILS Aaron Priest STAR TRAILS This view of the Milky Way as it appeared in September 2013 over Cutler, Maine, not far from the Little River lighthouse, is the world's "first stitched panorama of vortex star trails." VILLA GREBENI ASafaric VILLA GREBENI A few thousand miles southeast of coastal Maine, the Villa Grebeni lighthouse near Dubrovnik, Croatia, has its own solar power and fresh water from its own well. Bedrooms with amazing views, a terrace, an outdoor swimming pool, free Wi-Fi — this is not your old-school lighthouse inn. THE PEARL Loop Images/UIG via Getty Images THE PEARL Dubrovnik, the "Pearl of the Adriatic," is an ancient walled city on the Dalmatian coast. As UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) phrases it: "Although severely damaged by an earthquake in 1667, Dubrovnik managed to preserve its beautiful Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque churches, monasteries, palaces and fountains." CAPE COLUMBINE GO! / Jon Minster CAPE COLUMBINE For years Cape Columbine's light — usually the first one seen by ships coming from South America and Europe — was the brightest on the South African coastline. The tower itself, built in 1936, soars over the Cape Columbine Nature Reserve in Tietiesbaai. Visitors can spend the night in guesthouses that were once home to the lighthouse keepers. HUDSON BEAUTY Moelyn Photos HUDSON BEAUTY Hugging the shore of the Hudson River, the Saugerties Lighthouse (1869) and B&B in Ulster County is a marvel: a brick-and-mortar trip back in time, just a few hours north of New York City. O, BROTHER Ira Block O, BROTHER The East Brother Light Station, located on an island in the strait separating the San Francisco and San Pablo bays, was built more than 140 years ago. Today, it's a lovingly restored Victorian B&B with breathtaking views. STEPS AWAY joe daniel price STEPS AWAY Note: While travelers can not, strictly speaking, stay in the distinctive Santa Marta Lighthouse in Cascais, Portugal, the nearby Farol Hotel — a remodeled 19th-century mansion — is just steps from the 150-year-old lighthouse and museum. HEAD OF THE CLASS H Richard Johnston HEAD OF THE CLASS The Heceta (pronounced "ha - SEE - ta") Head Light on the Oregon coast was first lit in 1894. Today, the lighthouse features a B&B perched midway up a headland offering panoramic views of the Pacific. Be warned: The premises are rumored to be haunted. PIGEON POINT Westend61 PIGEON POINT Built in 1872, the 115-foot Pigeon Point Lighthouse stands on a bluff near Pescadero, Calif., just about halfway between San Francisco and Santa Cruz. Guests can stay in one of four houses set right beside the lighthouse. THE GIFT Auscape/UIG via Getty Images THE GIFT We're drawn to them for countless reasons: they're emblems of stability and safety; they're usually found in beautiful landscapes; they remind us of our shared histories; and on and on. But whether or not we spend a night or two inside one, or simply stop for a while and enjoy the view, most of us feel that no matter where we go, we'll always be welcome at a lighthouse. That's no small gift.



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