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State Indexes > WA > Bathurst Lighthouse

The Bathurst Lighthouse on Rottnest Island

The Bathurst Lighthouse forms the subsidiary light to the Main Rottnest Island Light, enabling vessels entering and leaving the Port of Fremantle to safely navigate the reefs around the island.

Looking to the Lantern Room Atop the Bathurst Lighthouse
Looking to the lantern room atop the Bathurst Lighthouse
Photograph courtesy: Rottnest Island Authority


LOCATION: Latitude 31° 51.41'S; Longitude 115° 32.39'E (Map)
OPERATOR: Australian Maritime Safety Authority
CHARACTER: Group Flashing (4) Every 16 Seconds
LIGHT SOURCE: 12 Volt 60 Watt Lamp
POWER SOURCE: Mains Electricity; Battery Standby
INTENSITY: 13,800 cd
ELEVATION: 30 metres
RANGE: 14 nautical miles (24 kilometres)
HEIGHT: 19.2 metres

The Bathurst Lighthouse
The Bathurst Lighthouse
Photograph Courtesy: Rottnest Island Authority


Built from local limestone in 1900, the tower is painted white with a gold lantern dome.

The Bathurst Lighthouse was built as a result of shipwrecks culminating in the the "City of York" disaster in 1899.

The light was one of four erected between 1910 and 1912 leading up to the Commonwealth takeover of coastal lights in 1915.

The tower is on the north east cape of Rottnest Island.  It is the subsidiary light to the Main Rottnest Island Lighthouse in the centre of the island.  This meant that vessels, travelling to and from the Port of Fremantle, could safely navigate around the reefs using triangulation.

The light was erected close the the original Pilot Station which was known to have been established by 1866.

The lamphouse and light mechanism was the one originally intended for use as the lower light at Cape Leeuwin but never used.

The original fixed acetylene open flame light source was replaced in 1920 by an acetylene flasher and the light was then demanned.

In 1986 the light was converted to electric operation.

The keepers cottage was sold to the Rottnest Island Board and is at present occupied by Board employees.

An Early Postcard of the Lighthouse
An early postcard of the Lighthouse
Publisher : P Falk & Co

The Bathurst Lighthouse
The Bathurst Lighthouse
Photograph: Sophia McHarney

The Bathurst Lighthouse
The Bathurst Lighthouse
Photograph: Sophia McHarney


Rottnest Island can be reached by ferry from Perth.  The lighthouse is within easy walking or cycling distance.  There are regular formal tours conducted by the Rottnest Island.

The Surrounding Area

Aerial view of the Rottnest Island Lighthouse
Photograph: Winsome Bonham

Special Thanks to:

  • Rottnest Island Authority for Photograph 

  • Sophia McHarney for Photograph

  • Laurie Sharp for Postcard

  • Winsome Bonham for Photograph


  • Brian Lord
  • Gordon Samuel, Rottnest Island Authority
  • Federal Department of Transport (now AMSA)
  • P Falk & Co
  • Rottnest Island Authority

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