The Georgetown Lighthouse was first a wooden structure built by the Dutch in 1817 to guide seafaring vessels from the Atlantic Ocean into the Demerara River. Located on Water Street, the 103-foot building was later rebuilt by the British on the same site in the 1830s. This almost 200-year-old building remains standing today, and looks down on what was once Fort William Frederick – now the Transport & Harbours Department.
The Lighthouse overlooking the city and the waters
The British constructed the lighthouse of brick, said to be able to withstand strong winds. It is surmounted by an iron gallery reached by climbing a flight of 138 stairs. The gallery contains a large 1000 watt bulb, which replaced an earlier floating light. This beam of light is visible for some 30-40 miles at sea.
Below the gallery is the watch room which is used by administrative staff. A 24-inch long range telescope was once used here to look out for any distress signals from ships at sea. It is now housed in the National Museum.