“The erection of the lighthouses has been a means of preventing much loss of life and property. Scarcely a winter previously elapsed without frequent and fatal shipwrecks,”
wrote Samuel Lewis in 1837.
He was referring to Skellig Michael’s two lighthouses which were established in 1826; and even if one them was discontinued as early as 1870, and the other made automatic in 1987 – the existing unmanned lighthouse on Skellig Michael’s south western extremity still continues its long tradition of service to mariners.
In the Skellig Experience Centre you can step in to (a reconstruction of) Skelligs lighthouse, and inspect equipment, artefacts, log books, charts, and the personal effects, hobbies and history of Skelligs lighthouse men. You can smile at the wry humour from the cartoon pages of the lighthouse journals of yesteryear. You can admire the exquisite pen-and-ink lighthouse drawings by Captain Colin Myles-Hook, Master for many years of the lighthouse service vessel, Granuaile.
You can even eavesdrop on a (re-created) lighthouse radio communication!