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The Great Fish Lighthouse was constructed close to the mouth of the Great Fish River, only a short 25 km distance from the beautiful holiday sanctuary that is Port Alfred.

Candlepower 5 000 000 C.D.
Character of Light One flash every 10 seconds
Installation Date 01 July 1898
Range 32 sea miles
Structure 9 metre black and white vertical striped masonry tower 
Type of Light Revolving electric
Other features Telemetry monitored from Port Elizabeth. Main supply and one standby diesel/alternator set 

Since the 1st July 1898 this scenic structure has kept the Indian Ocean faring cargo and carriers traveling off the east coast at a safe distance from the shoreline. The construction of the lighthouse, however, was supposed to have started sooner, but financial considerations delayed it even though it is one of South Africa’s smallest lighthouses. Due to the appearance of the Lighthouse, only 9 metres high, pained in black and white with a red lantern top, the locals often refer to it as the "short, red-headed fellow in the tuxedo". 

The shore around this lighthouse is a very treacherous one, claiming a number of victims such as The Waterloo in 1848, SS Kilbrennan in 1907 and the SS Caribou in 1928.

This lighthouse is built on a hillock 76 metres above sea level offering beautiful ocean views and is one of only four in the whole of South Africa to offer on sight accommodation. The Great Fish Lighthouse staff have always been tourist friendly and the light-keepers as well as their families have always been a part of the Port Alfred community.


The Great Fish Lighthouse offers two self catering cottages, each sleeping 6 persons and will cost between R580 and R820 per night. Costing varies depending on the time of the year and the number of people in your party. A campsite is also in the process of being established. Shopping for your stay can be done at Port Alfred where you can enjoy a picnic type weekend getaway at the cottage or travel into the village to try out the many good seafood restaurants close by. 

Things to do and see

  • Lighthouse Tours
  • Curios & Memorabilia on Sale
  • Self-catering Accommodation
  • Camping Site


Entrance fees are approximately, Adults R14 and children R7. Prices are subject to change, please contact the tourism office directly to confirm all prices. 

Find Us

If you’re leaving from Port& Elizabeth (which has the closest airport), take the N2 to Grahamstown and take the Port Alfred turn-off onto the R72. From Port Alfred, drive north-east up the R72 for about 30 km to the village of Fish River, site of the mouth of the Great Fish River. The drive from Port Elizabeth to Great Fish Point should take you just over 2 hours.

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