Victorian Lighthouse & Shipwrecks – Cape Schanck

Firstly I must confess I hit Publish when I should have hit draft, so many thanks to those who enjoyed my unfinished post 🙂

I do not claim to be any sort of expert, but I have been dabbling quite a bit of late into the lighthouses and shipwrecks off Victoria’s Coast. Apparently there is over 680 ship wrecks along Victoria’s Coast, so met with bad weather, human error or foul play [info here]. I have found it fascinating visiting and photographing several lighthouses and a few wrecks. There are 23 Lighthouses along our coast, the oldest is Cape Otway built in 1848 [Info here].

I have barely scratched the surface, but already it has become a bit of a fetish for Moth and myself. It started back before Easter when I visited Cape Schanck Lighthouse and then at Easter when we went to Phillip Island and saw the SS Speke at Kitty Miller Bay [Read post here]. We then saw the SS Ozone at Indented Head, last week out past Geelong. I truly find it fascinating reading about the regions, the wrecks and all the history. So I thought I blog on just about everything else, so why not lighthouses and shipwrecks?

I would love to start at the start of the trail, but I have not been there yet……I will one day. [Melbourne things to do]. So maybe I’ll start where I started?

Cape Schanck

The Cape Schanck Lighthouse was built in 1859 as the second coastal lighthouse in the Australian state of Victoria. It is located on the southernmost tip of the Mornington Peninsula. The tower was built from limestone, it is 21 metres (69 ft) tall. The light’s focal plane is situated 100 metres (330 ft) above sea level, the light characteristic is the Morse Code letter “N”, a long signal of 10.8 seconds followed by a flash. Depending on the bearingof the light, the colours are either white (south to west sector) or red (east sector). Due to its powerful lantern of one million candela and a first order Fresnel lens, which was installed in 1915, the light has a range of 26 nmi (48 km).

The lighthouse was not only one of the first such buildings in Victoria, it was moreover Australia’s first lighthouse tower with stone stairs. During the 1970s and 1980s the facility was restored and has since become an attraction for tourists. Today there is a museum in the old assistants’ quarters. Accommodation is available in the old residences of the lighthouse keeper. 


This was the start of my lighthouse visits (In Australia), but there were no shipwrecks here. This was a very quick photo opportunity and would very much like to go back and see the museum and lighthouse keepers cottages.

– Julz