Fodor's Expert Review Gibbs Hill Lighthouse
Designed in London and opened in 1846, this cast-iron lighthouse soars above Southampton Parish, stands 117 feet high and 362 feet above the sea, and offers a 185-step climb to the top for panoramic island views. The light was originally produced by a concentrated burner of four large, circular wicks. Today the beam from the 1,000-watt bulb can be seen by ships 40 miles out to sea and by planes 120 miles away at 10,000 feet. The haul up the spiral stairs is an arduous one—particularly if you dislike heights or tight spaces. But en route to the top you can stop to catch your breath on eight landings, where photographs and drawings of the lighthouse help divert attention from your aching appendages. Once you take in the views up top and return to solid ground, stop in at the Dining Room for refreshments.