“beautiful historic lighthouse”
The Sanibel Island Light or Point Ybel Light was one of the first lighthouses on Florida's Gulf coast north ofKey West and the Dry Tortugas. The light,98-foot above sea level, on an iron skeleton tower was first lit on August 20, 1884 and has a central spiral staircase beginning about 10 feet above the ground. It is located on the eastern tip of Sanibel Island, and was built to mark the entrance to San Carlos Bay for ships calling at the port of Punta Rassa, across San Carlos Bay from Sanibel Island. The grounds are open to the public, but the lighthouse itself is not. Residents of Sanibel Island first petitioned for a lighthouse in 1833, but no action was taken. In 1856 the Lighthouse Board recommended a lighthouse on Sanibel Island, but Congress took no action. In 1877 government workers surveyed the eastern end of the island and reserved it for a lighthouse. Congress finally appropriated funds for a lighthouse in 1883. The foundation for the new lighthouse was completed in early 1884, but the ship bringing ironwork for the tower sank two miles (3 km) from Sanibel Island. A crew of hard-hatdivers from Key West recovered all but two of the pieces for the tower. Punta Rassa became an important port in the 1830s and remained so up to the Spanish–American War. It was primarily used to ship cattle from Florida to Cuba. Until the railroads reached the area in the 1880s, ranchersdrove their cattle from open ranges in central Florida to Punta Rassa for shipment to Cuba. The lighthouse was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. The City of Sanibel now owns the Point Ybel tract and structures, although the tower is still operational under U.S. Coast Guard control.
Went here two weeks ago at 11pm after watching a beautiful sunset on the causeway. It's open 24 hours. I'd suggest going on a fuller moon because the view is incredible with the reflection on the water. We didn't see the amount of stars in the provided photo, but it was a great experience with my husband. The only thing that would make it better is to open it to the public.
If you go during sunset you will most likely see dolphins.
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Sanibel Island Lighthouse
- Mon - Fri: 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
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