Lindau Lighthouse

Categories: Sightseeing, Cultural and History

Lindau Lighthouse
Lindau Lighthouse

[ source: Wikipedia]

One of the most scenic and photographed lighthouses in Germany is the Lindau (Lindau vacation rentals | Lindau travel guide) Lighthouse in Lake Constance. The so-called New Lindau Lighthouse (or West Mole Lighthouse), Bavaria's only lighthouse, was built between 1853 and 1856, and is the southernmost lighthouse in all of Germany. The lighthouse and the port of Lindau were constructed by the Bavarian Railway Company, and the lighthouse continues to be operated by Deutsche Bahn's (German Rail's) Lake Constance ferry subsidiary.

The lighthouse stands at about 108 feet tall and is located at the end of the western mole sheltering the town of Lindau's harbor. Uniquely, the New Lindau Lighthouse has a clock that is inset into its facade. After its lighting on October 4, 1856, the lighthouse was lit by an open oil fire. Over time, the light source was converted to kerosene and then to gas. In 1936, an electric light was installed, and the lighthouse was fully automated in the late 20th century. Today the light is triggered by radio signals emitted by approaching ships.

Besides the romantic New Lindau Lighthouse, an older lighthouse is also located here. The New Lighthouse replaced an older light tower that had been in use since its construction in 1230. The Mangturm, which still exists today, is a square, fortified tower with a tall pyramidal roof covered in colorful tiles. At 121 feet, this tower is actually taller than the New Lindau Lighthouse. The Mangturm is located on an island near the northeastern shore of Lake Constance. The tower functioned militarily and defended the town of Lindau for several centuries. According to legend, the tower also functioned as a lighthouse, although historians have not yet figured out exactly how the lighting was done.

In addition to the lighthouses, Lindau offers much to see, such as the intricately decorated historic town hall and the Maximilianstrasse shopping area. Although the first written reference to the town dates from 882, there is archaeological evidence that a community already existed on this island site during the Roman Empire.

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About this Article

Rachel Hildebrandt

This travel guide has been written by Rachel Hildebrandt.

Starting with her first trip to Germany at the age of 16, Rachel has traveled, worked, and studied in Germany extensively. Although her first encounter with German culture was in Lower Saxony, since that time the focus of her subsequent work as a freelance historian and translator has shifted eastward. Building on her graduate studies in Dresden, Rachel has worked for a variety of German foundations as a historian and translator, and is currently pursuing research pertaining to the Sorbs in Lusatia (eastern Saxony).

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Location, Map, and Driving Directions

Location: Hafenplatz, 88131 Lindau (Bodensee), Germany

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