Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse open to visitors


Ericka Muncy

The Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse as seen from U-Tiki restaurant.

The Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse is officially back open as Palm Beach County enters its third phase of the COVID-19 reopening plan. 

To minimize crowding, the lighthouse is limiting the number of visitors but operating tours daily from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. All visitors over the age of two must wear a mask while touring. 

“Before [COVID-19] our maximum capacity was 500 people per day,” Amanda Dixon, Program Director of Jupiter Lighthouse and Museum, said. “Now, we can only hold 100 people per day, only one-fifth of what we used to.”

In addition to its gorgeous views and rich history, the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse offers a safe place to gather. 

“We reopened the lighthouse because we want to safely continue to serve the community and to give those a place to socialize,” Dixon said.

Although the lighthouse is open to visitors, two popular activities, the “Hike Through History” and “Climb & Paddle,” are cancelled. However, the Loxahatchee River Historical Society, the group that operates the lighthouse, is dedicated to helping visitors learn about 5,000 years of regional history. They introduced online lighthouse tours as an alternative to physical ones and continue to share the lighthouse’s history on their website.

According to www.jupiterlighthouse.org, visitors can download the “free smartphone app Jupiter Lighthouse Tours” that is  available for Apple and Android technology. 

“There you will find a ‘Kids Tour with Charlie Pierce’ for students to experience the lighthouse grounds virtually. This tour lasts 30 minutes,” the website states.

The website also details the lighthouse’s rich history. Jupiter was one of six lighthouse projects in the state assigned to Army Lieutenant George Gordon Meade and was completed in 1860. Since then, the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse has guided hundreds of ships to safety in addition to surviving dozens of hurricanes.