Light Station Restoration Complete!

After some 15 years of planning, fund raising, volunteer work and preservation work by dozens of contractors, the Town of Swan’s Island has completed the restoration of the Burnt Coat Harbor Light Station. There are four historic buildings at the Light Station – the light tower, the keeper’s house, the oil house and the bell house – and all four have undergone careful and thorough restoration in compliance with historic preservation standards. It is rare to find a light station with so many of the original buildings virtually intact.

As soon as restoration was well underway, the keeper’s house and tower were opened to the public during the summer season. Over the last several years, thousands of visitors have toured these buildings and enjoyed local art and exhibits of local history in the keeper’s house. Climbing the tower with a local guide is a favorite activity for visitors – on a sunny day, the views from the top of the light tower are spectacular. Visitors also enjoy exploring the 1.8 miles of trails on Hockamock Head, adjacent to the light station site. An apartment on the upper floor of the keeper’s house has proved an extremely popular summer weekly rental. Rental income provides the Town with a revenue stream that assists with routine maintenance costs.

Friends of the Swan’s Island Lighthouse (FOSIL)supported the Town financially in this historic restoration project through an annual appeal, a capital campaign and lots of grant applications. Altogether, close to $900,000 was raised to complete the historic restoration of these buildings. For more detail on the restoration and future plans, check out the FOSIL website,

The light station, a critical aid to navigation in its day, still guides vessels safely into Burnt Coat Harbor. It still is a Coast Guard maintained active aid to navigation. Next year marks the 150th year that the light has shone from the tip of Hockamock Head. We hope that lighthouse friends and many of those who supported the restoration will join us in August 2022 as we celebrate the sesquicentennial of the lighting of the light!

Photo credit for featured image: Harbor View Studio, Swan’s Island

What Visitors Have To Say

This was the trip and stay of a lifetime! New England and island life at its best. We had the opportunity and fortune to meet some of the nicest people ever! Swans Island people gave us a giant welcoming hug!!

- Susan and family, July 2021

Our hosts were WONDERFUL and helpful, and being able to go up into the lighthouse tower was amazing. An all around unforgettable experience. THANK YOU!

- Michael and Kurt, June 2021

This is our first time to Swan’s Island and the Keeper’s House Apartment….How lucky we are to have found this treasure! We loved our week of peace, nature, and beauty. The shimmering water, the ever-changing sky and clouds, the trails in the woods …made for a restorative week.

- Paul and Bonnie, August 2020

This place quietly, simply, intoxicates you. Senses are full; smell, sights, sounds … yet not enough to overwhelm, just enough to soothe, just enough to make you fully aware of the natural gift Hockamock offers.

- Conrad and Michelle, August 2020

What a perfect holiday!! … Heaven on earth …lobster every night for dinner, fabulous hikes, amazing kayaking, spectacular sunsets…But perhaps the most cherished memory is the kind and lovely people of this island….

- Mary Beth & Michael, Sept. 2020

I have always wanted to stay at a lighthouse and now my dream has come true! The keeper’s quarters and the entire lighthouse park completely exceeded my expectations! Thanks for providing everything my son and I needed for a perfect stay and such amazing hospitality….

- Kristin and Izak, Sept. 2020

What a magic place. Sun and moon glinting off the water. The lighthouse beam in the trees, the sound of a gentle surf when the tide is in. The bell buoy ringing in the channel. Wonderful sunsets.

- Mike and Kathy, September 2019

The view out our window - moonlight on the ocean, porpoises, giant owls - plus the sound of the gong, and the wild berries…truly a special experience.

- Rebecca and Rich, August 2019

The apartment is beautiful. And the view is amazing! We could not have asked for a better vacation. We plan to return!

- Ann and Dave, September 2018

Thank you to ALL who made our stay so wonderful and relaxing. To the Islanders who told of trails to explore, thank you! We look forward to returning to this little piece of heaven on earth.

- Heather and Jamie, September 2018

From the amazing Light Keeper’s House to the beautiful view from the porch of the same, the amazingly friendly people, and our daily hikes along this rugged Maine Coast. Everything was perfect.

- Leesa and Howard, August 2018

Everything is magical! This is one of the best vacations! Ever!

- Ronald and Janet, July 2018

The beauty you offer is immeasurable. The clarity of light, wind, and Downeast character here recharged me.

- Lee, June 2018

What a wonderful place! We were in awe the moment we arrived. What a quiet and peaceful location for a vacation.

- David and Lorie, June 2018

You truly have a treasure perched out here atop the rocks with the vast sea at the doorstep. We watched a bright moon spilling its light onto the water, listening to the music of the waves, and wondering anew at the stars emerging in the dark sky.

- Susan, September 2017

This has been a lifetime experience! The beauty of Swan’s Island can’t be described in words or photographs, for they just don’t do it justice. I look forward to coming back again next year!

- Lacy, September 2017

We just stayed there and it is tremendous. The view and setting are amazing. The quality of the Keeper's house (2nd floor) is excellent. It is fresh, well decorated, and spacious.

- Mary, July 2017

We are fortunate to have traveled to many places in this world, but still contend, by far, this is the prettiest place on earth. Stay in the keeper's house. You will not be disappointed!!!! It is special.

- Spencer, July 2017