The Massachusetts Lighthouse Trail
Since the 1700s, lighthouses have captured our imagination with tales of seafaring and adventure. Massachusetts is home to the first lighthouse in the U.S. Over 45 lighthouses still grace our coastlines, rocky cliffs, and sandy beaches. Today, you can marvel at these picturesque beauties along our scenic coast on the Massachusetts Lighthouse Trail. From Cape Ann in North of Boston to Cape Cod and the Islands, travelers can explore coastal communities, the maritime history of the Commonwealth, and discover these breathtaking gems of beauty. To help you plan your journey, here are some of our most notable and accessible lighthouses in the Bay State.
- Greater Boston & South of Boston
Home of the first lighthouse in the United States
- Martha's Vineyard
Discover lighthouses across two different islands
Explore Nantucket lighthouses by bike
- Cape Cod
Visit one of the most remote lighthouses on the Cape
- North of Boston
Check out one of the most unique lighthouses in New England
Cape Cod & The Islands: Martha's Vineyard
Starting in Woods Hole, you can catch the 45-minute ferry ride to Martha’s Vineyard, located seven miles off the coast of Massachusetts in the Atlantic Ocean. There, there are three lighthouses to visit, spread over two islands.
Starting in Aquinnah, the western-most point of the island, you’ll see Gay Head Light, which is open to the public seasonally and just a short walk from a parking lot. Built in 1799, it’s the oldest lighthouse on Martha’s Vineyard.
In Edgartown, on the eastern side, walk the path down to Lighthouse Beach for a closer look at the working Edgartown Harbor Light, which marks the entrance to Edgartown Harbor and Katama Bay. If it’s open, you can climb the staircase up to the lantern room. From Edgartown, take the quick ferry ride to Chappaquiddick Island, where you’ll find Cape Poge Lighthouse on the northeast tip of the Cape Poge Wildlife Refuge. Its light, which sits 63 feet high, can be seen from nine miles out in the sea.