Skip to Main Content
Menu
Contact Us Search
Organization Title

Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park

Contact Information

(650) 879-2120

Park Hours

Day-use Area 8:00 am to Sunset

Driving Directions to Pigeon Point Light Station SHP

On California Highway 1, 20 miles south of Half Moon Bay and 27 miles north of Santa Cruz.

View on Map

Camping and Lodging

Online reservations are not available, please call the park for further options.

Brochures and Campground Maps

Upcoming Park Events

No events scheduled at this moment.


Pigeon Point Light Station Tower ImagePerched on a cliff on the central California coast, 50 miles south of San Francisco, the 115-foot Pigeon Point Lighthouse, one of the tallest lighthouses in America, has been guiding mariners since 1872. Its five-wick lard oil lamp, and first-order Fresnel lens, comprised of 1,008 prisms, was first lit at sunset, November 15, 1872. The lens stands 16 feet tall, 6 feet in diameter, and weighs 2,000 pounds. Now on display in the Fog Signal building, it sat in a lantern room constructed at the Lighthouse Service's general depot in New York before being shipped around the Horn. Although the original Fresnel lens is no longer in use, the lighthouse is still an active U.S. Coast Guard aid to navigation using a Vega Marine Rotating Beacon.

The coastal areas surrounding Pigeon Point Light Station are rich with life. Marine mammals, such as seals and whales, can be seen regularly from shore as they pass by beyond the surf. The intertidal zone along this part of the coast, particularly in the rocky reefs that flank the light station, contains a diverse and numerous variety of plant and animal life.

Lighthouse Closed for Repairs
In December 2001, a section of the iron belt course on the exterior of the lighthouse fell off. The lighthouse will remain closed until the structure can be restored. The lighthouse may still be viewed from the grounds. For more information go to Lighthouse Restoration

Seasons/Climate
The weather can be changeable; layered clothing is recommended. Afternoons can be very windy.

Facilities
The park has restrooms near the parking lot, a pay phone, and limited picnic tables. A park store is located in the historic carpenter's shop.

Also located within the park, Hosteling International runs the Pigeon Point Hostel for guests who are interested in staying overnight.

A small public beach is located 100 yards from the main parking lot.

Activities
Tours
Half hour guided history walks around the lighthouse grounds are available 10am to 4pm Thursday through Monday, when staffing permits.

It’s a Long Way to Pigeon Point

Saturday, July 11 at 8:30 pm

Saturday, August 8 at 8:30 pm

Come and enjoy an evening of history and learn about the important role this lighthouse played for travelers entering California for the past 143 years. The 1 hour event begins with a short slide show on the history of the peopling of California, followed by a tour of the original Fresnel lens, located in the Fog Signal Building. Meet at the Pigeon Point Hostel Dining Hall, between Seal and Whale Cottages. Please bring a flashlight. Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park and Pigeon Point Hostel are located on Hwy 1, about 20 miles south of Half Moon Bay and 30 miles north of Santa Cruz. For more information, go to: www.norcalhostels.com/pigeon or www.parks.ca.gov/pigeonpoint or www.facebook.com/PigeonPointLightHouse or call: Pigeon Point Hostel 650-879-0633; Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park 650-879-2120. 

 
Events made possible by California State Parks, Coastside State Parks Association, and hostelling International. Visit www.parks.ca.gov/PigeonPoint and www.coastsidestateparks.org  or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PigeonPointLightHouse

August Activities Schedule

Please click here for a downloadable list of programmed events at in are California State Parks.

Let us be your guide on an adventure like no other…

California State Parks Guided Backpacking Adventures

1 Night Trip: Saturday, August 1 to Sunday, August 2

            From Big Basin Redwoods State Park to Waddell Beach

            Cost $80

(Mandatory Pre-Meeting: Monday, July 13 from 6:30 pm to 8 pm)

3 Night Trip: Friday, August 21 to Monday, August 24

            From Castle Rock State Park to Waddell Beach

(Mandatory Pre-Meeting: Wednesday, August 5 from 6:30 pm to 8 pm)

Cost $190

Who better to lead you through our parks than California State Park professionals? Travel from spectacular ridgelines, through old growth redwood forests, to sandy shores with our knowledgeable team of naturalists. Imagine if the Santa Cruz Mountains could speak, and the stories they could tell. Our guides will share the secrets of this precious wilderness and give you a window into the lives of the people who lived here for thousands of years. There is no limit to the personal growth and amazing natural beauty you will experience on your backcountry adventure. For both trips, space is extremely limited   Sign up is on a first-come, first-served basis. Register by calling Cathryn Boult at Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks (831) 429-1840 or emailing cathryn@thatsmypark.org. For more detailed information please call (831) 335-6391 or (831) 427-2288 or visit www.thatsmypark.org.

1 Night, 2 Day Trip from August 1 to August 2:

Route: You will begin at Jay Camp, Big Basin Redwoods State Park and travel along the Skyline to Sea Trail and arrive at Waddell Beach, 17 miles North of Santa Cruz on Hwy 1. This trip is approximately 13 miles long, with a net elevation change of 1,000 feet. We will be hiking no more than 8 miles per day. Families are welcome, but please no children under the age of 13. All children must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

 

Transportation: You will be required to organize your own transportation for both drop off and pick up.

Cost: $80

*You will be responsible for providing your own food and gear

 

3 Night, 4 Day Trip from August 21 to August 24

Route: You will begin at Castle Rock State Park and travel through the mountains, eventually arriving at Waddell Beach, 17 miles North of Santa Cruz on Hwy 1. This adventure is approximately 30 miles long with a net elevation change of 3,000 feet. We will be hiking no more than 10 miles per day. Families are welcome, but please no children under the age of 13. All children must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

Transportation: You will be required to organize your own transportation for both drop off and pick up.

Cost: $190

*You will be responsible for providing your own food and gear


Available Activities and Facilities at Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park

OVERNIGHT FACILITIES
Lodging
TRAIL USE
Hiking Trails
DAY-USE ACTIVITIES & FACILITIES
Historical/Cultural Site
Picnic Areas
Env. Learning/Visitor Center
Exhibits and Programs
Fishing
Guided Tours
Interpretive Exhibits
Beach Area
Swimming
Nature & Wildlife Viewing
Windsurfing/Surfing
Geocaching