The Cape Florida Lighthouse is Bill Baggs State Park beloved landmark and at 95 feet tall, it stands proudly overlooking the grounds, beaches and crystal clear waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Biscayne Bay.
The beautiful Lighthouse grounds and the Keeper's Cottage are open for visitors and tours are available as well, giving you a bit of the colorful history of South Florida's oldest landmark.
A 65 foot Lighthouse was built in 1825, but later destroyed during the Second Seminole War of 1836. The Tower and Keeper's Cottage where later rebuilt, and in 1856 the structure was jacked up to 95 feet, the height at which it stands today.
The Lighthouse grounds offer plenty of shade and banks for enjoying the surroundings.
A paved walkway winds around and takes you to the Lighthouse exhibits
The Lighthouse exhibits which are well marked with lots of placards full of information and history.
There is the Restoration Hardware on display.
These are the components of the Lantern Room which was restored to its 1855 looks. The components where replaced with cast iron reproductions built according to the original plans.
After you're done with the display signboards which show you you where each piece fits in the overall picture, a narrow walkway framed with palmtrees brings you right in front of the Lighthouse.
You can climb up the Lighthouse for some stupendous views of Biscayne Bay, downtown Miami and beyond.
And just around the corner from the Lighthouse is the Keeper's Cottage, which serves as a museum.
The Lighthouse is open to all but children under 8 are not allowed up the stairs.
There are 109 steps on the narrow spiral staircase that takes you to the top of the Lighthouse and on to a watch room with stunning panoramic views.
If you are claustrophobic or afraid of heights, this climb is not for you!
But once you are up there, there are dazzling 360 views of the beaches that extend on the east side of Key Biscayne, the turqouise blue Bay, the Miami skyline on the west... and the water is so clear, you can even spot some of the larger marine life along the coast: we have seen dolphins, a manatee once, and a ray gliding by, just gorgeous...
Views from the Cape Florida Lighthouse, the beaches extend below...
Downtown Miami at a Distance
Aerial view of the jetty
The Lighthouse and surrounding grounds are located in the Southern tip of the park, on the Ocean side. See it on our Bill Baggs Map here.
The Grounds are open every day from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Tours of the Lighthouse and the Keeper's Cottage are free and conducted by park volunteers and staff twice daily except Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.
There is no fee to visit the Lighthouse once you are in Bill Baggs State Park but there is a fee to enter the park.
Children under 8 years old are not allowed to go up the stairs.
The Lighthouse and Keeper's Cottage Museum are only open during tour times.
Having survived hurricanes, indian attacks and Key Biscayne's fast-paced development, "el farito" or "Little Lighthouse" as it is known amongst our Spanish speakers, is a fun little detour and deserves a visit if you happen to be at Bill Baggs.
The Cape Florida Lighthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places, which is the official list of the America's historic places worthy of preservation.
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Things to do at Bill Baggs State Park:
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