Cape Bolinao Lighthouse

Satellite image of the Cape Bolinao lighthouse in Bolinao, Pangasinan

I mentioned last year that I once went to Treasures of Bolinao resort in western Pangasinan and that I would’ve visited the Cape Bolinao Lighthouse had I known that it was nearby. Well, Google Maps shows that this landmark is actually quite near, much less than a kilometer east of the resort. This lighthouse is notable because it’s the second-highest lighthouse in the country after the one in Cape Bojeador, Ilocos Norte.

Ground-level shot of the Cape Bolinao lighthouse Photo by Anne Jimenez. (CC)

This lighthouse was constructed in 1905 and marks the Punta Piedra Point in Barangay Patar, Bolinao, Pangasinan. I’m guessing its location is so that passing sea vessels know where Pangasinan’s peninsula is jutting out into the South China Sea forming the Lingayen Gulf. I’m not sure but I think ships can see the lighthouse’s lantern from within Lingayen Gulf.

The lighthouse stands 101 feet (~31 meters) tall and its lantern stands about 250 feet (76 meters) above sea level making it visible from up to 44 kilometers away at sea. The staircase to the illumination room has 140 steps and the room features a spectacular view of the rocky coastline with pockets of off-white sand and rolling hills.

If you want to learn more then you should read the 2006 PDI feature article about the lighthouse that is mirrored in the Heritage Conservation Society blog. According to that article, the lighthouse’s lantern has not been operating since 2004. I’m not sure if that has been fixed by the Philippine Coast Guard already.

You can also check out the WaypointsDotPH narrative about the lighthouse which also contains pointers on how to get there. Curiously, one of the photos on that page shows the marker plate of the lighthouse bearing the coordinates. Plugging this into Google Maps shows a different spot about 150 meters to the northwest and this is probably because the coordinates on the plate uses the Luzon datum, not the international WGS84 datum that GPS (and Google Maps) uses. If you mess around with GPS units, then you probably understand all of this.

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Posted on
September 19, 2009
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Ilocandia and PangasinanLandmarks / MonumentsLighthouses
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