There are five lighthouses that would make wonderful day trips from The Western Whitehouse. If you are interested in more lighthouses, you can visit: Oregon Lighthouses.
Cape Arago Lighthouse
Sunset Bay State Park
On Cape Arago Hwy, 12 miles off US 101, SW of Coos Bay
89814 Cape Arago Hwy
Coos Bay, OR 97420
Long before white settlers arrived in 1853, the Coos Indians lived in villages near the bay, which now bears their name. Just south of Coos Bay and 2.5 miles north of Cape Arago, is a small, detached piece of land with sheer cliffs called Chief's Island by the Native Americans. After the arrival of the settlers, Coos Bay soon became one of the more important harbors along the Oregon Coast. As the shipments of lumber and coal from the bay grew, so too did the need for a navigational aid to guide vessels to the bay. So, in 1866, The Cape Arago Lighthouse was built on Chief's Island. The lighthouse that stands on the island today is the third lighthouse built on the site.
From Highway 101 in Coos Bay, take Newmark Street west. Newmark Street will become Cape Arago Highway. Follow Cape Arago Highway to Sunset Bay State Park. Shortly after you pass the entrance to the camping area and before you reach Shore Acres, there will be a pullout area on your right from which you can get a distant view of the Cape Arago Lighthouse.
Since the grounds, dwelling, and tower are now owned by the Coast Guard, the bridge to the island is closed to the public as is the lighthouse. However, while you are near Cape Arago Lighthouse a worthwhile side trip is a stop at Shore Acres State Park . In the summer, the gardens are spectacular, and if you are there around Christmas, you will be treated to a fantastic display of lights.
Cape Blanco Lighthouse
Cape Blanco State Park
91814 Cape Blanco Rd
Port Orford, OR 97465
The lighthouse and historic home are open from April to October. The lighthouse tour, managed by the Bureau of Land Management, costs $2/adult (16 and older), free for youth under 15. The Hughes House tour is conducted by knowledgeable volunteers and is free, but donations are gratefully accepted and help fund restoration and maintenance of the house.
Cape Blanco is the most southern of Oregon's lights, and is the westernmost point in Oregon. Proposed in 1864, it was the first lighthouse in the state outfitted with a first-order Fresnel lens in 1870.
Coquille River Lighthouse
Bullard's Beach State Park
US 101, 2 miles N of Bandon
PO Box 569, Bandon, OR 97411
The historic Coquille River Lighthouse is located at the end of the beach access road in the park. It's staffed from May through October with park volunteers who interpret the history of the area. From this point, there are 4.5 miles of open beach to explore. Bring your mountain bike to ride along the hard-packed sand along the edge of the surf, or just enjoy a leisurely stroll along the ocean shore.
And there's more nearby. Across the river is Bandon by the Sea. Visit a variety of shops, galleries, and restaurants in the town that is called "The Cranberry Capitol of the World," as well as the "The Storm Watching Capitol of the World." Learn the legend of Face Rock and access miles of shoreline at our day-use state parks on Beach Loop Drive. For more information on the local area, visit the Tourist Information Center in Old Town.
Hours are 2-5 p.m., Mon.-Thur.; 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Fri.-Sun. The lighthouse closes for the season Oct. 16, 2011. Call the park office at (541) 347-3501 for current information.
Heceta Head Lighthouse
Heceta Head State Park
Off US 101, 13 miles
North of Florence
Heceta Head State Park (which includes Devils Elbow State Park) is located in a cove at the mouth of Cape Creek. There are picnic tables sheltered from the wind and a great view of the ocean. A short trail leads to the historic Heceta Head lighthouse and lighthouse keeper's house. A recently-completed trail gives you a spectacular view of the coast north to Cape Perpetua.
Heceta Head trail is part of a 7-mile network. Trails of varying difficulty feature beach and wildlife viewing areas. Wildlife refuge islands feature a view of puffins, cormorants, gulls, and other bird nesting areas. Sea lions and whales can be seen from the beach and cliff-top lighthouse.
On the west side of 1,000-foot-high Heceta Head, 205 feet above the ocean, the lighthouse is one of the most photographed on the coast. The light at top of 56-foot tower was illuminated in 1894; the automated beacon, seen 21 miles from land, is rated as the strongest light on the Oregon coast.
Umpqua River Lighthouse
Off US 101, 19 miles north of North Bend
460 Lighthouse Rd.
Winchester Bay, OR 97467
Built in 1857, the Umpqua River Lighthouse was the first sighted on the Oregon Coast and towers above the entrance to Winchester Bay. The 65-foot tower contains a distinctive lens which emits a red and white flash. The lighthouse and adjacent museum are operated and maintained by the Douglas County Parks Department. Tours are offered May 1 through September 30.
The park is centered in the stretch of towering sand dunes protected by the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. These dunes, many of which reach heights of 500 feet or more, are ideal for the off-road enthusiast, or for the person who enjoys the magnificent wonders of nature. For more information about the dunes and the recreational opportunities offered, contact the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area visitor center in nearby Reedsport or call (541) 271-3611.