Cape Agulhas Lighthouse

Cape Agulhas Lighthouse

Poised on the Southernmost tip of the continent of Africa, this grand old lady of the seas has guided countless vessels and the souls aboard them, to land and safety. She has also witnessed human tragedy on an unimaginable scale. Perilous reefs and razor-sharp rocks have unrelentingly claimed victim after victim with a loss of life, treasure and vessels. In March 1999, this magnificent lighthouse will be 150 years old and in homage to this feat of perseverance and diligence, we humbly dedicate this page.


To all who responded to our request for greetings we thank you most sincerely. We received a total of 59,882 visits and email greetings representing over 100,000 individuals worldwide. Again our thanks and gratitude. This page will remain on the site as many people may still wish to visit this grand queen of the seas. It is the Africa's only Lighthouse Museum.

Southernmost tip

Poised on the Southernmost tip of the continent of Africa, this grand old lady of the seas has guided countless vessels and the souls aboard them, to land and safety. She has also witnessed human tragedy on an unimaginable scale. Perilous reefs and razor-sharp rocks have unrelentingly claimed victim after victim with a loss of life, treasure and vessels. In March 1999, this magnificent lighthouse will be 150 years old and in homage to this feat of perseverance and diligence, we humbly dedicate this page.

To all who responded to our request for greetings we thank you most sincerely. We received a total of 59,882 visits and email greetings representing over 100,000 individuals worldwide. Again our thanks and gratitude. This page will remain on the site as many people may still wish to visit this grand queen of the seas.

Cape Agulhas Lighthouse

Cape Agulhas Lighthouse was erected on an isolated hill in 1848. On 1 March 1849 it flashed its first warning signal. Today, 150 years later, she still stands - steadfast, serene and immovable. A globe of 1,500 Watt, delivering 7,500,000 Candle Power, flashes her signal at regular intervals. The lighthouse houses a unique lighthouse museum. It offers a graphic account of the development of lighthouses through the ages and the history of the Cape Agulhas Lighthouse is dealt with in detail. Photographs of all South African Lighthouses, together with a map showing the exact position of each one, and a large collection of postcards of lighthouses from all over the world, are also on display.

Heroism In Death

The sinking ship was breaking up about them, yet the soldiers stood firmly ranked on board - "Stand fast!" "Stand Fast!", the order was barked, harshly and clearly, their commander's voice rising above the sounds of crashing waves, frantic neighing of horses and the desperate screams of women reaching out to their beloved husbands left behind on the doomed ship. The proud ship Birkenhead was anguishing in her final death throes. The soldiers never moved for fear of endangering the lives of the 23 women and 6 children in the lifeboats. "The order and regularity that prevailed on board ... far exceeded anything that I thought could be effected ..." (Captain Wright, 91st Regiment -- one of the surviving officers).

Oilmen's Route

The "Oilmen's Route" allows one to step back in time and retrace a history of shipwrecks, fishing and whaling along the Overberg coast. Although old coins, trinkets, & small fragments of crockery from sunken vessels are still occasionally washed up along the shore, it is the natural wonder that attracts the majority of visitors, for whom the chance of finding lost treasure is an exciting but remotely possible bonus. The 5 lighthouses of the Overberg and the Bredasdorp Shipwreck Museum are major landmarks along the route and many short and a few longer walks & excursions are offered. Geyser and Dyer Islands, home to thousands of Cape fur seals and African penguins, are surrounded by the remains of no less than 10 shipwrecks and the trip to the islands is truly extraordinary! The area around the islands is also renowned world wide for Great White Shark sightings, research and cage diving.

The rocks that form Cape Agulhas belong to the Table Mountain Group, often loosely termed the Table Mountain sandstone. They are closely linked to the geological formations that are exposed in the spectacular cliffs of Table Mountain, Cape Point, and the Cape of Good Hope.

The climate is extremely mild, with no temperature or rainfall extremes. The average rainfall is 500mm per annum, mostly received in winter (unverified, as closest data is from Bredasdorp). Temperature climate data is available for Cape Agulhas, averages are:

  • Jan max: 23,8°C (min: 17,7°C); Jul max: 16,5°C (min: 10,8°C)

Cape Agulhas is the southernmost point in the continent of Africa. It is located at the Cape Overberg region, 170 kilometres (105 mi) southeast of Cape Town in the Western Cape Province of South Africa. Cape Agulhas is located at Overberg Coast region and about two hours drive from Cape Town. The warm Agulhas Current and the cold Benguela Current meet somewhere between Cape Agulhas and Cape Point. Visitors who climb the narrow ladder to the top of the light house are rewarded with a panoramic view of the Indian ocean.

The lighthouse is open daily between 9 am and 4.30 pm. It comprises a museum and a coffee shop.

Contact Cape Agulhas Lighthouse:
Agulhas National Park,
PO Box 120, L'Agulhas 7285.
Tel: 028-4356222, 028-4356078.
Fax: 028-4356225.
Email: etti...@parks-sa.co.za.
More info see: Cape Overberg between the Cape Peninsula and the region known as the Garden Route in the east.


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