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Cordouan, 150 years as a listed Historic Monument!

The Cordouan Lighthouse is the oldest French lighthouse still in operation. Listed as an Historic Monument in 1862, at the same time as the cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris, its magnificent architecture that bears witness to its long and tumultuous history has made Cordouan a "Versailles of the sea", a lighthouse unlike any other in the world, at which the visitor can only marvel. 

Le phare de Cordouan by timothee_le_blanc

Key facts

  • Height: 67.50 metres
  • Beam range: 21 nautical miles
  • Latitude: 45° 35' 11" North
  • Longitude: 1° 10' 25" West
  • International number: D.1300

History and Architecture

  The mouth of the estuary has been of ill repute since ancient times: so hazardous were its waters that it gained a reputation as a sailors' graveyard. And yet, ever since ancient times, tradition has indicated the present of hermits on the islet, who would light beacon fires ...

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The lighting systems of the Cordouan Lighthouse

  A research laboratory for new lighting systems Ever mindful of its duty to light up the seaways, the remarkable monument that is Cordouan has always been at the forefront of new developments in lighting. Drawn to the prestige of the Lighthouse of Kings, France's finest engineers ...

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Explore the rooms

Visit the Cordouan lighthouse… please follow the guide! The Cordouan lighthouse has stood watch over the Gironde estuary for over four centuries. An architectural tour de force rising from the ocean itself... majestic in its soaring height, the lighthouse proudly displays the beauty of ...

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Cordouan's rocky intertidal zone provides a rich habitat for many plant and animal species.  Biodiversity on the Cordouan plateau A rich habitat Several studies have identified some 70 species of seaweed and more than 230 animal species (molluscs, gastropods, sponges, crustaceans, ...

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