It’s worth the trip!

Since the Light Station is on an island, it takes some planning to visit us. We’ve gathered all the information you need to get to the island and some basic travel logistics on the Travel Information page.

As you come down the hill towards the light station, you will see four buildings — the trim, red-roofed Keeper’s House, the white Light Tower with its black bonnet, the old red brick Oil House and the Bell House, which projects over the rocks at the very tip of the point. You will also see the bell. It is no longer in the bell house but on the left of the walkway as you approach the buildings.

The Keeper’s House and the Light Tower are open to the public starting late June through early September. Click here to see current days and hours. The Bell House and Oil House are presently closed pending restoration.

You will find historical displays in the Keeper’s House, a small art gallery, mementos, natural history information, souvenirs, and a friendly manager. You can also get lots of information about the light station and a map of the trails. The Keeper’s House also offers visitors an oceanside porch with rocking chairs, bottled water for purchase, a small “gift shop,” and a public restroom.

For much of the summer, we have tower tours. Our tower guides will answer your questions about the light station’s history and life on the island. On a short path to the oil house’s right is a shaded bench overlooking the harbor, which makes a wonderful picnic area.

The Keeper’s House

The Keeper's HouseThe keeper’s house was built in 1872 and was home to lighthouse keepers and their families for about 100 years. At one time, it was home to the Chandler family, with 11 children. Though, not all the children were living there at the same time.

The restored rooms downstairs (parlor, dining room, and kitchen) are now open to the public for several weeks during the summer, with historical displays and art by local artists. You can also pick up note cards, postcards, prints, T-shirts, and other mementos of your visit. The downstairs rooms are available for special events such as weddings, family reunions, classes, and celebrations.

There is a fully equipped warming kitchen that can be used for catered events. There is an oceanside porch with wonderful ocean views. It is a perfect place to watch the boat traffic entering and leaving the harbor through the Western Way or watching the sunset on a summer evening.

The upstairs rooms in the keeper’s house were originally two large bedrooms, a bathroom, a tiny office, and a large attic, which was also used as a bedroom. It must have been crowded during the Chandler years! The upstairs rooms have been converted into a comfortable apartment, with a bedroom, living room, kitchen, and bathroom, for weekly rental during the summer months. Rent The Keeper’s House Apartment!

The Light Tower

The Light TowerFirst lit up in August 1872, the light tower is about 35 feet high and is capped with a square iron platform and a cupola or bonnet that holds the light. The light was originally a 4th order Fresnel lens. The keeper placed an oil lamp inside the lens in the evening and was responsible for keeping the light going all night long, in all kinds of weather.

The Coast Guard removed the Fresnel lens in the 1970s. It has been replaced at least twice since then. The present LED light was installed in 2017.

Inside the tower, flights of metal steps (30 steps) climb to the Watch Room, where the keeper could keep watch on stormy nights. Our friendly tower guides will accompany visitors who wish to climb the tower and who can do so. There is no handrail on the stairs. From the Watch Room, a short ladder leads up to the lantern room.

The Oil House

The Oil HouseThe oil house was built in 1895 to hold kerosene supplies, which was the fuel used in the lighthouse lantern. To reduce the risk of fire, it had brick walls and a slate roof and was placed some distance from the house. Kerosene was a big improvement over the fuel burned previously, lard, which solidified in cold weather.

Today, the oil house is closed up, awaiting repairs. The light draws electrical power from an array of solar panels, with backup power from the electrical grid. On a short path to the oil house’s right is a shaded bench overlooking the harbor, which makes a wonderful picnic area.

The Bell House

The Bell HouseThe bell house was built in 1911. At that time, it was a tall, tapering, rectangular building housing a mechanical system to ring the bell. Weights had to be wound up to the top of the tower. As they descended, they caused a hammer to strike the bell. When that system was no longer needed, the bell house was cut down to its present height. The bell house is presently closed up and awaiting restoration.

United States Lighthouse Society Passport Stamp

You can get your passport stamped at the keeper’s house when it is open. When the keeper’s house is closed, stickers are available in the brochure box on the ocean-side porch. Between mid-September and mid-June, the stamp is kept at the Town office.


There are three linked geocaches on the Hockamock Head trails.

If You Like Stories Of Lighthouse Life…

We have them! The light station has been home to several families. One family had 11 children! Read about the life of one young boy who was born and grew up on Hockamock Head in “A Lighthouse Huck Finn.” There were births, deaths and shipwrecks, storms, and celebrations. Read some of our lighthouse stories here.

What Visitors Have To Say

Our stay at the lighthouse keepers apartment was lovely. the place has been decorated in a simple and serene way and the kitchen had all we needed. The view and location is splendid and all involved with the property were friendly.

- Teresa, September 2023

Our stay at the lighthouse — and our week on Swan's Island — exceeded expectations. We packed light, arrived via bikes, and easily navigated the island without a car. Tracy and everyone we met welcomed us and went out of their way to make us feel at home. We felt very privileged to stay in this thoughtfully restored historic building. Kudos to the tireless volunteers! We look forward to returning.

- Tekla, September 2023

The Lightkeeper’s apartment is a unique and beautiful treasure, not to be missed! I feel like I want to tell everyone I know about this cozy, charming little place, yet at the same time keep it a secret; to be shared only amongst those who know. You get to live in a lighthouse, on an island, off the coast of Maine!!! Need I say more?!?

- Dillon September 2023

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