With a 68-meter high tower, and a range of about 46,3 kilometers, Swinoujscie lighthouse is the highest of all the traditional lighthouses along the Baltic Sea, and the 15th highest in the world. It is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Świnoujście. Be prepared for a tough climb! There are lots of steps here with a great view awaiting at the top of the winding stairs.
An imposing tower at the entrance of the port
Also known as Swinemünde Lighthouse, the now iconic landmark was built in 1858 on the island of Wollin, on the other side of the narrow Świna, in order to replace the first lighthouse in the location, built in 1928. The tower is made of yellow bricks and is unpainted. The base of the tower is octagonal with a gallery. The tower itself is round with a second gallery and a lantern. At night, you will notice that Świnoujście is the only lighthouse in Poland to emit a red beam alongside the more common white beam. Its red beam is targeted south, to illuminate the Oder navigation channel upstream, which is quite dangerous in this area. The cross-section of the entire 1857 tower was octagonal. However, in 1902–1903 the tower was restored to repair spalled brickwork. This converted the shape of the tower above the first gallery to its current round shape.
A well-maintained tower
During the World War II, this strategic harbor and stronghold for defenders of the Szczeciński Lagoon was devastated. In 1945, during the retreat of the German troops, an order was given to destroy the lighthouse. However, the German keeper refused to follow the order and the tower survived, and only suffered minor damages that were repaired in 1959. Between 1998–2000, the lighthouse was fully restored and was and opened to the public in August 2000, along with a lighthouse museum in the keeper's house, a two-story brick house adjacent to the tower. Both the buildings showcase many interesting exhibits. The museum and tower are open every day, but opening hours may vary throughout the year.
A spectacular view
The view from the top is worth the effort of climbing 300 steps. On a clear day, you can see up to 45 km. However, you can always relax with a cup of coffee in the beautiful surroundings if the climb seems too daunting. Near the lighthouse, you will find the old fortifications of Swinoujscie that are worth a visit if you are in the area.