Rockland, Maine is the quintessential New England coastal destination, full of Cape Cod style charm, colorful fishing buoys, and several beautifully unique lighthouses. There’s something about the rugged beauty of lighthouses that really speaks to me, and they’ve fascinated me ever since I was a kid, especially since there’s not too many on the coast of Southern California.
My favorite out of all of the lighthouses near Rockland has to be the Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse because of its weathered beauty, and location at the end of a 7/8 mile long breakwater made of huge stones. Its lonely position jutting out into the still-bustling harbor of Rockland made this lighthouse a mysterious must-see when we visited Maine this past August. If you’ve been wanting to add this to your list of must see lighthouses in Maine, here’s what I’d recommend to know before you go…
- Wear comfortable shoes!
- Take bathroom breaks beforehand
- Avoid if traveling with small children or those with mobility concerns
- Research the tides and consider time of year before going
- The lighthouse building itself isn’t open for entry (at the time of writing this post), but you can still get up close and see the exterior
- Parking is tight, and can get busy, so you may be required to park on unpaved areas
Like I mentioned above, this lighthouse isn’t the most easy to access. To get there, you’ll have to park at the entrance to the trailhead (which can get busy, so be prepared to park on the shoulder of the residential entry road to the trail if the tiny lot is full). From the parking area, it’s a relatively short but uneven trail to the beginning of the breakwater pier, which itself is made of large, uneven stones with gaps of varying degrees between them. Wearing a good pair of athletic sneakers is recommended, and as there’s a lot of tripping hazards, it’s best to avoid this spot if you have mobility challenges or children in strollers. There’s also no real railings, and the rocks can potentially be wet in spots, so use caution and keep an eye on kids! The walk is lengthy, about 7/8 of a mile each way, so bring water, hats, and sunglasses. There are also no restroom facilities at the park or lighthouse itself (at the time of this post), so make bathroom stops beforehand. The tide can reach the top of the breakwater in bad weather and certain times of day, so do your research beforehand to ensure a safe, dry hike!
As of when we visited in summer of 2023, the lighthouse building itself is shuttered and closed to visitors, but you can still walk around the lighthouse, snap some photos, and enjoy the views of the harbor and all the ships passing by. Overall this lighthouse, likely because of the trek to get there, wasn’t too crowded when we were there, and there’s even a small floating dock off the end of the breakwater that’s perfect for getting those classic New England lighthouse photos! It really is such a unique lighthouse to see, and its weathered persistence is as fascinating as it is beautiful in this quiet coastal Maine town. I also loved that there’s a lot of locals that fish from the breakwater, so you really get a feel for the local culture in this spot. Here’s my overall rating of this attraction, from least (1) to most (10) in each category:
- Tourist Level: 2/10 – not too crowded
- Accessibility: 2/10 – not the easiest to access
- Beauty: 8/10 – beautiful and unique!
- Would Recommend: 10/10 – a must see
Drop a comment below if you’ve visited the Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse or if you’re planning a trip soon, and be sure to subscribe to my blog + follow me on Instagram for more travel guides!