Top 7 Lighthouse Stays

Being an island nation with one of the most dangerous coastlines in the world, it’s rather unsurprising that there are a myriad of lighthouses scattered along our shores, from Robert Stevenson’s elegant yet functional designs to strange and eerie off-shore lighthouses in the English Channel. And none more eerie perhaps, than that of the story associated with the mysterious disappearance of the Eilean Mor lighthouse keepers in the remote Outer Hebrides.

What is infinitely more surprising is that many of these lighthouses have now been converted to hotels or self-catering cottages for your holidaying enjoyment! In this week’s blog post we’ve highlighted seven of our favourite lighthouse stays in Britain, for a holiday to remember.


1. Belle Tout Lighthouse B&B, Eastbourne, East Sussex

Situated in a unique position of the south coast of England, where the South Downs roll into the English Channel, Belle Tout lighthouse was reopened in 2010 after an extensive renovation during which time it was picked up and moved back over 50 feet to avoid it falling into the sea!

According to reviews the breakfasts here are fantastic, and there is also a sitting room at the top of the lighthouse where guests can relax next to a log fire.

If you are looking to stay at Belle Tout, our recommendation is to aim for the Keepers Loft room which is situated on the upper floor of the tower. As the name suggests, this was the original bunk room of the lighthouse keepers and still features the original ladder to the double loft bed.

>> Visit the owner’s website


2. Strathy Point Lighthouse Cottages, near Thurso, Northern Highlands

Sleeps 5 + 5 people

These two former lighthouse keeper’s cottages stand  in a dramatic location on the end of a promontory overlooking the wild Atlantic Ocean, on the stunning north coast of Scotland. A haven for wildlife, dolphins, whales, porpoises, seals and otters are all frequent visitors to this shoreline.

Completed in 1958, Strathy Point was the first lighthouse in Scotland, specifically built to be electrically operated. Although the lighthouse was originally fitted with a fog horn, guests can sleep soundly at night with the knowledge that it is no longer used.

South Keeper’s Cottage can be booked together with Principal Lighthouse Keeper’s Cottage to accommodate up to 10 guests.

>> Check availability and prices


3. Corsewall Lighthouse Hotel, Dumfries & Galloway, Scotland

Dating back to 1815, this luxury hotel is situated on the northern tip of the Rhinns Peninsula and boasts views out towards the coast of Ireland. There is also an award winning restaurant as well as a helipad (we kid you not!) and helicopter transport can be arranged by the hotel. Interestingly, the light on the hotel is still operated by the Northern Lighthouse Board and to this day still shines brightly above the hotel, a warning to ships approaching the mouth of Loch Ryan.

Corsewall is a listed ‘A’ building, designated as a building of major national importance and stands adjacent to the Iron Age fort of Dunskirkloch.

>> More Information


4. Lighthouse Cottage, near Cromer, Norfolk

Sleeps 5 people

This former lighthouse keeper’s cottage dates back to the 18th century and is built into the side of Happisburgh’s working lighthouse. The property itself is the perfect size for a family of four or five and features two TV’s, a large garden, barbecue and – of course – some amazing sea views! To quote one of the customer reviews, it’s ‘gobsmacking’.

Standing 26 metres tall, Happisburgh is the oldest working lighthouse in East Anglia and is open to the public on Sundays during the summer season.

>> Check availability and prices


5. Aberdeen Lighthouse Cottages, North East Scotland

Sleeps 4 – 6 people

These three beautiful lighthouse holiday cottages make it on to our ‘top 7’ list because of their fantastic location just outside of Aberdeen city centre. As well as being just a £10 taxi ride away from the city’s amenities, the cottages are decorated to a very high standard and feature flat-screen TV’s, free WiFi… oh yes, and views to die for!

For those of you interested in the history of the lighthouse, it dates back to 1833 and was designed by none other than Robert Stevenson. The Astronomer Royal, on a visit in 1860, described it as ‘the best lighthouse that I have ever seen’, and it also saw a bit of action during World War II when a mine drifted ashore and caused some damage to the lighthouse’s doors and windows.

>> Check availability and prices


6. The West Usk Lighthouse, near Newport, South Wales

We were especially impressed by the hot tub on the roof with views across the Bristol Channel at this quirky little hotel! Inside the en-suite bedrooms are all in the lighthouse itself, and for those looking for a romantic break the hotel also can provide champagne, balloons and flowers in the rooms. Other quirky extras include being driven to the restaurant in the local village by a Rolls Royce, or in the summer having a barbecue on the roof overlooking the ships passing through the Bristol Channel below.

West Usk was the first lighthouse to be designed by the Scottish civil engineer, James Walker, who went on to build another 21 lighthouses. With its distinctive short squat design, the lighthouse originally stood on an island at the mouth of the River Usk.

The B&B also offers a floatation tank, aromatherapy sessions and lots of complementary therapies.

>> More Information


7. Coastguard Lookout, Dungeness, Kent

Sleeps 5 people

Alright, perhaps not a conventional lighthouse in the scheme of things, however this beautifully converted tower carried out a similar task from the mid-20th century. Originally owned by HM Coastguard, this former radar station monitored shipping in the English Channel protecting them from harm either by colliding or grounding.

Standing amidst the pebbles on Dungeness’ quiet shores, Coastguard Lookout has been thoughtfully converted to a contemporary building featuring modern furnishing and high-end comforts. The wild landscape of Dungeness is intensely peaceful and offers dramatic views in every direction.

>> Check availability and prices