Sydney Lighthouses You Can Visit

  • Mums & Bubs
    All Ages

Visiting lighthouses in Sydney ticks all the family fun day out boxes: lots of exercise, fresh air aplenty, beautiful views, low-cost entertainment and an interactive history lesson even too-cool-for-school kids will love.

Looking for the best lighthouses in Sydney worthy of an Enid Blyton tale? Check out these locations in and around Sydney, and let the adventures begin!

Sydney Lighthouses You Can Visit

1. Norah Head Lighthouse

Lighthouses in Sydney
If you're keen to head just out of Sydney, Norah Head Lighthouse is a must-visit.

If you’re after an in-depth lighthouse experience that brings history to life, put Norah Head Lighthouse – located about an hour and a half away from Sydney – at the top of your list.

Arguably one of the prettiest lighthouses in Sydney, another great thing about visiting Norah Head Lighthouse is the kid-friendly 30-minute tour. Look at fascinating artifacts (such as giant light globes, a 700-lens optics prism and a giant bell) and climb up the spiral staircase to the very top, where you can enjoy a magnificent view of the central coast.

Location: 40 Bush St, Norah Head

Cool Caves You Can Visit in Sydney

2. Cape Baily Lighthouse

Lighthouses in Sydney
Cape Lighthouse in Botany Bay serves a big role in lighting up the south head of Botany Bay.

As one of the younger lighthouses in Sydney (it opened in the 1950s), Cape Baily Lighthouse is completely solar-powered and still operational today.

While you can't actually go inside the building, the walk along the Cape Bailey Coast Walk makes for a great day out.

Location: Cape Baily Track, Kurnell

3. Barrenjoey Lighthouse

Barrenjoey Lighthouse
A trip to Barrenjoey Lighthouse is the perfect outdoor activity for kids who don’t mind a bit of a climb.

For a visit to one of the most iconic lighthouses in Sydney, you can't beat Barrenjoey Lighthouse.

Once you enter the car park on the Pittwater side of Palm Beach, you must walk uphill for about 1.5km to the top, or for those who want a challenge, take the much steeper Smugglers track.

Once you reach Barrenjoey Lighthouse, you’ll be rewarded with a breathtaking 360-degree view of the Pacific Ocean, Hawkesbury River and Palm Beach. If you’d like to learn more about the history of the 138-year-old Barrenjoey Lighthouse and the nearby keeper’s cottage, guided tours are available every Sunday from 11-3 pm, no bookings are required.

Location: 1199D Barrenjoey Rd, Palm Beach

4. Hornby Lighthouse

Lighthouses in Sydney
Hornby Lighthouse

Built in 1858 after the tragic shipwreck of the Dunbar at South Head, Hornby Lighthouse is a great place for imaginations to run wild, thanks to the historic gun emplacements at the historic keeper’s cottage.

Hornby Lighthouse is accessible via the South Head Heritage Trail, a great scenic walk with the whole family. Bring your binoculars in winter, and you may even spot a whale along the way!

Location: S Head Heritage Trail, Watsons Bay

5. Macquarie Lighthouse

Macquarie Lighthouse
Welcome to one of the first lighthouses in Sydney.

As Australia’s first and longest-operating navigational light designed by famous convict architect Francis Greenway, Macquarie Lighthouse is an absolute must-see.

Take the kid-friendly 20-minute tour, and you’ll get to climb 100 steps up the spiral staircase to the lantern room, see the fantastic Fresnel lens (known as ‘the invention that’s saved a million ships’) and enjoy panoramic views of Sydney from the balcony.

Make sure you plan in advance, as tours run every two months on a Sunday, and pre-booking is essential.

Location: Old South Head Rd, Vaucluse

6. Grotto Point Lighthouse

As one of the smaller lighthouses in Sydney, Grotto Point Lighthouse in Balgowlah Heights is known charmingly as the Disney Castle, thanks to its fairy-tale-like appearance.

You can access Grotto Point Lighthouse via a kid-friendly bushwalk along the Mania Scenic Walkway or park 500 meters away along Cutler Road. Once you reach the lighthouse, you’ll be treated to scenic views out to the Tasman Sea and, if you’re lucky, spot a cormorant or white-breasted sea eagle in the sky.

Location: Balgowlah Heights

Lighthouses Near Sydney

7. Kiama Lighthouse

Lighthouses in Sydney
Got some time up your sleeve and fancy a longer adventure down the South Coast?

Kiama Lighthouse is in one of NSW's most picturesque and tourist-friendly spots.

Erected in 1887, Kiama Lighthouse is still operational and features a museum in the adjacent Keeper’s House.

Visiting Kiama Lighthouse is a great activity to include in a day trip around the sights of Kiama, especially as it’s right next to the famous Kiama Blowhole. This sea-cliff cavern spouts water up to 20 metres in the air!

Location: Blowhole Point Road, Kiama

8. Wollongong Lighthouse

Wollongong Lighthouse
Wollongong Lighthouse is also known as Flagstaff Hill Lighthouse.

Another good road trip destination just outside of Sydney, Wollongong Lighthouse is an active icon of the Wollongong cityscape.

Located in the Heritage-listed harbour precinct, the 12-metre-high Wollongong Lighthouse has operated since the 1900s and was the first fully automatic electric one in Australia.

Did you know that Wollongong actually has a second lighthouse? Located just a stone's throw north, Wollongong Breakwater Lighthouse was built in the 1800s and restored in 2002. 

If you’re visiting these icons on the weekend, look out for the local ice cream vans that frequent the area to satisfy your sweet tooth! 

Location: Endeavour Dr, Wollongong

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