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The Hill (Donkin) Lighthouse


Pic Source: PlanetWare

South African Lighthouse No. 22


The Story of a Lighthouse and its Pyramid


Well, actually the Pyramid came first. Sir Rufane Donkin had it built as a monument to his wife in August 1820 - Lady Elizabeth, whose name was the obvious inspiration behind that of Port Elizabeth. How romantic, right?

The lighthouse was only commissioned later, on 1 June 1861, but the town of Port Elizabeth's lights behind it eventually started to interfere with its visibility from the bay, so they increased its height in 1929.

With time the town kept growing into a bigger and bigger city, so the lights just kept multiplying, and in 1973 they realised that the lighthouse was no longer effective. Hill Lighthouse was therefore decommissioned, but you are more than welcome to visit it (go to the Port Elizabeth Tourist Information Office, located inside the adjoining building).

Photo Credit: Jonker Fourie

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