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State Indexes > VIC > Whalers Bluff Lighthouse

The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse

The Whaler's Bluff Lighthouse guides vessels past the treacherous Whaler's Reef into the Portland Harbour.

The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse at dusk
Photograph: 4C's Enterprises


LOCATION: Latitude 38°20'4" S, Longitude 141°36'6" E [map]
OPERATOR: Victoria Channels Authority
EXHIBITED: 1859 Battery Point. 1889 Whalers Bluff
CONSTRUCTION: Dressed stone
CHARACTER: Group Flashing White and Red every 10 seconds
ELEVATION: 41 metres
RANGE: 15 nautical miles
HEIGHT: 12 metres
CUSTODIAN: Victoria Channels Authority

Whalers Bluff Lighthouse Surrounded by a Garden.  Photograph: Greg Walker
The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse
Photograph: Greg Walker


The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse was originally erected with keeper's quarters on Battery Point in 1859 and was know as the Portland Bay Lighthouse.

It was first lit in that year.

The lantern is catadioptric made in England.

The lighthouse relocated, stone by stone, to it's current position on North Bluff (now Whaler's Bluff) in 1889 to make way for gun emplacements on Battery Point.

Another reason given for the relocation was that it was less vulnerable to attack on Whaler's Bluff.

Dacre Smith in his book notes an interesting written direction at the time of the relocation:

"Lighthouse keepers are not, without authority, to permit views of defence works to be taken from the lighthouse towers or premises by photographers or others, and no information shall be supplied respecting such defence works".

Whalers Bluff Lighthouse With Portland Harbour in the Background.  Photograph: Ed Kavaliunas
The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse at Portland
Photograph: Ed Kavaliunas

Whalers Bluff Lighthouse
Photograph: Bob Adams


DISTANCE : (Portland) 1.5 km
DISTANCE : (Melbourne) <<>>
ACCESS: Road. Not well signed

Aerial view of the Whalers Bluff Lighthouse
Photograph: Winsome Bonham


US Lighthouse Society Tours Australia - Part 2 Bulletin Jun 02
Lighthouses From the Air - Part 3 Bulletin Nov 01
Australian Lighthouse Tour Bulletin Dec 00
Photographic Expedition Bulletin Mar 98


Seeking details for lighthouse keeper in Victoria - Matthew Edward Mabbitt Bulletin Jan 05
Seeking archival records for Matthew Edward Mabbitt Bulletin Apr 03

The Surrounding Area

The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse after a storm
Photograph: Kristie Eggleston

Other Whalers Bluff Sites

The Portland Lighthouse Grant Maizels
Great Ocean Road Lighthouses - Portland TGOR
The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse Garry Searle

Special Thanks to:

  • Ed Kavaliunas for Photographs
  • 4C's Enterprises for Photograph
  • Greg Walker for Photographs
  • Winsome Bonham for Photograph
  • Kristie Eggleston for Photograph


  • Brian Lord
  • The Lighthouses of Victoria by Dacre Smyth
  • From Dusk Till Dawn by Gordon Reid

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