Contacts

Lighthouses

The Freeport of Ventspils, Lighthouses, Oviši, Užava, Akmeņrags

The Freeport of Ventspils Administration is responsible for the preservation and maintenance of the oldest lighthouse in Latvia – Oviši lighthouse, as well as the romantic lighthouse of Užava and the one most remote from towns – the Akmeņrags lighthouse. These are the only three lighthouses in Latvia that are officially open to the public. These buildings are considered a unique cultural heritage that attracts the visitors of the Kurzeme coast.

Oviši Lighthouse

 
Tower height – 37 m
Altitude – 38 m
The flashing light is visible 15 nautical miles distant

The oldest lighthouse in Latvia – the Oviši lighthouse – is located on the Oviši promontory 360m from the shoreline. The lighthouse is still active and has been included in the list of national protected cultural monuments.

The previous name of the lighthouse – Lisere or Luserorta promontory – existed until 1917. Lysa in Swedish means to burn, but ort place or horn. Already since the 11th century bonfires or tar barrels have been burned here as a mark of orientation. The Oviši lighthouse stands also for coastal shallows of the same name and indicates the shoreline’s change of direction.

The lighthouse construction began in 1809 but the war against Napoleon’s troops in 1912 interrupted it. The construction was completed in 1814. The lighthouse is built on wooden stilts by using red bricks and certain stones. It is built as a wide, conical tower in the form of a massive stone cylinder. The tower has a dual cylinder structure: the diameter of the stone wall is 11.5m while the diameter of the inner cylinder is 3.5m. Such dual cylinder lighthouses were used as defensive constructions in case of enemy attacks in the 18th and 19th century. The lighthouse tower is 37 meters high – that is the height of a 5-sorey building.

Booking a visit  Working days during business hours  (+371) 63600364
Advance booking after hours  (+371) 26264616
Opening hours Monday 8.00 — 18.00
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 8.00 — 17.00
Friday 8.00 — 16.00
Ticket prices Lighthouse visit for adults  EUR 0,70 
Lighthouse visit for children  EUR 0,30
Tent site for adults  EUR 2,15 per day
Tent site for children   EUR 1,00 per day
Car parking in the lighthouse territory  EUR 0,70 per 1 hour

 

Užava Lighthouse

      
Built in 1879, renewed in 1925
Tower height – 19 m
Altitude – 44 m
The flashing light is visible 15 nautical miles distant

The lighthouse of Užava has been included in the list of the national protected cultural monuments and is located about 20 km south from Ventspils. It stands on one of the three high wooded dunes – the so-called Teniroka dune (28 m high). From afar, this dune reminds people of a baking over, therefore, in the 19th century the German name of Užava lighthouse was Bakofen.

Užava was mentioned in historical sources for the first time already in 1230. It is believed that already in the 17th-18th century a navigation fire in the form of a bonfire was placed on a pile of stones in order to serve as a guidance sign for ships on their way to Ventspils.

The construction of the first Užava lighthouse was ended in 1879 when also a pier for supplying construction materials was built. The Užava lighthouse was a tower of bricks that was connected with a single story dwelling house for the staff working in the lighthouse. A light room of metal with a lantern in it was placed on the top of the tower. On September 10, 1879 light signals were first sent from the Užava lighthouse with the help of an optical system. In 1910, a piling with 7-8cm thick planks and stones in front of the wall was created, since due to the flat seashore the waves destroyed the base dunes. During World War I, the Užava lighthouse was seriously damaged – the cylindrical part of it and the outbuildings were destroyed. Only the octagonal base of the tower (on which the construction of the new lighthouse was finished on February 21, 1925) remained intact. The external shape of the new tower is identical to the previous lighthouse.

Throughout the lighthouse’s existence stabilization of the adjacent coastal slope have been carried out. In the 1920’s and 1930’s wicker baskets filled with pebbles, and boulders were used for fixation. In 1970’s these were replaced by concrete blocks.

The lighthouse has four floors; it is plastered, whitewashed and connected to the dwelling house. In the 1950’s the height of the tower was 19.4m. Inside the tower – around the central column – a metal spiral staircase is placed. On the top of the tower a balcony with metal railings and a metal-structured light room is placed (its diameter – 3m – is equal to the diameter of the lighthouse).

Booking a visit Working days during business hours (+371) 63630573
Advance booking after hours  (+371) 28341836
Opening hours Monday 8.00 — 18.00
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 8.00 — 17.00
Friday 8.00 — 16.00
Ticket prices Lighthouse visit for adults EUR 0,70 
Lighthouse visit for children   EUR 0,30

 

Akmeņrags Lighthouse

 
Built in 1864, 1868 or 1889, renewed in 1957
Tower height – 38 m
Altitude – 38 m
The flashing light is visible 18 nautical miles distant

In order to visit the lighthouse (located around 80km from Ventspils) you first need to visit Ziemupe. The lighthouse is the main adornment of Akmeņrags – just reach the top of the lighthouse and you will be able to see a fantastic view of the sea and the surrounding forests.

The lighthouse was built in 1885. The materials for construction were shipped across the sea from Liepāja, then handed over to shallow floating pontoons in Akmeņrags and thereby delivered to the trestles constructed in the offshore. The lighthouse tower was renewed in 1921. The tower with the lantern is up to 5 stories (38m) high; its two flashlights (green) light up every 7.5 seconds. 

Booking a visit  Working days during business hours and advance booking after hours  (+371) 28350899
Opening hours   May – September: Working days 8.00 — 17.00
October – April: Working days  10.00 — 15.00
Ticket prices Adults, senior citizens, students  EUR 0,70 
Children   EUR 0,30