Do you plan to visit the Ponce De Leon Inlet Lighthouse and Museum in the near future? Are you looking for some tips to make the most out of your trip to Ponce Inlet? Don’t worry you are not alone.
Future visitors like you contact the lighthouse on a daily basis to ask questions about a wide range of subjects including parking, handicap accessibility, places to eat, and much more. We are here to answer these and other common questions to help make your lighthouse visit the best it can possibly be.
Commonly Asked Questions:
The Ponce Inlet Lighthouse and Museum is open to the daily to the public with the exception of Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Please refer to the museum’s Hours of Operation for more details.
Yes, the lighthouse is open for climbing. Access to the lighthouse is included with your paid admission. With the exception of the lantern room which houses the tower’s third order Fresnel lens, the entire lighthouse is accessible to the public, however, we ask that you be aware of the following rules and safety tips before climbing the 203 steps to the top.
Food and beverages (including water) are not allowed on the museum grounds. Spilling any of these items on historic floors, walls, or exhibits can easily cause irreversible damage and pose serious slip hazards for our patrons. Experience has taught us that we can best protect this National Historic Landmark by not allowing visitors to bring in food and drink. Water fountains are conveniently located in several locations throughout the light station grounds. Accommodations to this policy can be made in accordance with the specific medical needs of our guests. Please talk with the gift shop manager upon your arrival if necessary. We appreciate your cooperation and understanding regarding this issue.
Most visitors explore the lighthouse and museum using a self-guided tour map that is provided with each paid admission. Self-guided tours do not require reservations of any kind. However, parties of 10 or more that wish to enhance their overall lighthouse experience may do so by signing up for a Group Tour in advance of their planned visit. Private and after-hour tour options including Climb to the Moon and Climb with the Keeper are also available for those who are interested for an additional fee.
Florida may be called the Sunshine State but it is also known for its stormy weather. This is especially so during the hot summer months when afternoon thunderstorms are common. Inclement weather may require staff to temporarily close the tower. For your safety, the tower is not open for climbing when thunder, lightning, or significant weather events such as tornado watches or warnings are present within the lighthouse’s general area. When this occurs, the lighthouse will be reopened once it is safe to do so. In instances where guests cannot wait for the tower to reopen, rain checks can be issued upon request to provide free admission at a later date. Please check the local Weather Conditions when planning your visit.
Yes, free parking is provided for all lighthouse guests for the duration of their visit. The museum’s lower main parking area is reserved for motorcycles and regular-sized vehicles only. Oversized vehicles including buses, RVs, and travel trailers may utilize the museum’s overflow parking lot that is accessed via a short driveway near the northeast corner of the main parking area. The museum’s main entrance and gift shop may be reached from either location. Please be Advised: Museum parking is reserved for the lighthouse patron vehicles only, all other vehicles are subject to tow at the owner’s expense.
Pets are not permitted but service animals are.
Your security and safety are important to us! The Preservation Association employs museum monitors to answer visitor questions, respond to emergencies, and address issues of concern as they arise. In addition to its staff, the museum also utilizes a video monitoring system to ensure visitor safety and security throughout the premises. We encourage guests to stop and talk with our museum monitors who can be easily identified by their yellow shirts to enhance their overall lighthouse experience.
The Ponce Inlet Lighthouse and Museum prides itself on maintaining a family-oriented atmosphere that is fun and exciting for young and old alike. We ask that all guests conduct themselves in a respectful and appropriate manner to ensure everyone has a wonderful time by following these simple rules:
Smoking, including smokeless electronic cigarettes (i.e. vaping) is strictly prohibited on the light station’s grounds. Smoking is only permitted in the designated area outside the gift shop by the main entrance.
Visitors are required to wear proper attire while visiting the Ponce Inlet Lighthouse and Museum. Proper attire includes footwear (shoes, boots, sandals, and flip-flops), shirts, and pants/shorts. Clothing may not display graphics of an inappropriate nature including objectionable language, images, or designs. For the safety of the historic buildings and all lighthouse guests, wheelies, skates, and cleated footwear (i.e. cycling shoes) are not allowed.
The Ponce de Leon Inlet Light Station is a National Historic Landmark and home to one of the finest lighthouse museums in the world. Unfortunately, theft is always a threat for museums. We ask that you not bring large bags, backpacks, or other storage devices (i.e. suitcases/carry-ons) into the museum for the security of our museum’s collection. Diaper and camera bags of a reasonable size are permitted but may be subject to search by museum staff.
Carts (i.e. wagons) are not permitted. However, infant and toddler strollers are allowed throughout the historic light station with the exception of the tower. Strollers must not exceed 31” (79 cm) in width and 52” (132 cm) in length. We ask that visitors leave their strollers at the base of the tower when climbing the lighthouse. In an effort to protect the site’s historic structures, we also ask that you leave your stroller outside when possible. If you have to bring your stroller inside, please inspect the wheels prior to entering each building to ensure they are free of dirt and operate properly to avoid damaging the historic hardwood floors. The Preservation Association is not responsible for the security of unattended strollers or their contents.
Regular visitors are welcome to take all the pictures and videos they like while exploring the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse and Museum as long as their activity does not impede access to any public areas or interfere with the experience of their fellow guests. The use of selfie-sticks to suspend cameras over the edge of the gallery deck is not permitted due to the potential danger of objects falling from the top of the tower and onto people below. Professional photographers, videographers, and film crews wishing to photograph or film on site should visit the Professional Filming & Photography page on this website for more information.
The creation of art using special equipment, pastels, paints, and other media are not allowed on the lighthouse grounds without the express permission of the museum’s curatorial staff at least two business days in advance of your planned arrival. Please contact the museum’s registrar via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (386) 761-1821, ext. 23 for more details.
People often ask to fly drones over the Ponce Inlet Light Station. For the safety of our guests and the light station’s structures, flying drones anywhere over the National Historic Landmark is strictly prohibited.