The lighthouse will be open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. General admission is $10 for adults, $9 for seniors, military and AAA members, $8 for students and free for children under 42 inches tall. General admission includes access to the lighthouse’s new “visitor plaza” and the lighthouse tower. 

Cape Henry Lighthouse is the first federally funded public works project of the newly formed United States government. It was authorized by George Washington and overseen by Alexander Hamilton. The Lighthouse is situated near the “First Landing” site where English settlers first set foot on their way to settle in Jamestown. Built with the same Aquia sandstone as much of Washington, D.C, the lighthouse guided sea travelers to safety for almost 100 years. The distinctive black and white striped “New” Cape Henry Lighthouse was built in 1881 but remains closed to the public.

Preservation Virginia members placed a tablet on the tower in 1896 to mark the site of the “First Landing” and in 1930 an act of Congress deeded the Lighthouse and surrounding land to our care.

Today, Cape Henry Lighthouse is surrounded by the Joint Expeditionary Base Fort Story (JEBFS). Please review the guidelines provided by JEBFS for entering the military base before your visit.


583 Atlantic Avenue
Fort Story, Virginia 23459


The lighthouse is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 


Plan your visit


*All climbers must be at least 42″ tall. Adults are not permitted to carry children.

Please note: During the summer months, the temperature at the top of the tower can reach extreme levels. Cape Henry Lighthouse will close the tower when the heat index inside reaches 125°. We also close the tower during thunderstorms and when lightning has been spotted. Visitors will still be able to walk to the top of the dune and shop in the museum store. Winter weather advisories also may effect the opening of the tower.


Cape Henry Memorial

Visit the nearby National Park Service site where the first English colonists landed in April 1607.


Key Visitor Info

Before visiting Cape Henry Lighthouse, please be sure to read the additional information at the bottom of this page. This information includes guidance on location, arrival, and rules and regulations.


Hours & Directions

We are open!

Our normal operating hours are:

Cape Henry Lighthouse is open daily.
Tours stop 45 minutes prior to closing.

January 3 to March 15: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
March 16 to October 31: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
November 1 to December 30: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Day and New Years Eve, New Years Day and January 2.



Preservation MembersFree (Become a member)
Combination Ticket (includes tower climb)$14
General Admission$10
AAA, Senior (60+), Military Discount$9
Student Discount$8
Children Under 42 InchesFree
Tower Climb (limited availability)General Admission Pricing


For information on pricing and availability:

Inquire about CAPE HENRY


Key Visitor Info

Location & Arrival

Tips To Reduce Parking Stress

Visiting on weekdays, and arriving before 11 am or after 3pm, could help avoid long entrance station lines and delays, and difficulty finding a place to park.

During peak visitor season at Cape Henry (typically from April into November each year), parking is extremely limited and usually fills by 11 am. During these times, visit Cape Henry with a back-up plan. Visitors are strongly encouraged to consider visiting mid-week, which is when Cape Henry is generally less crowded.

  • Be flexible. Arrive with alternative plans and destination in mind or plan to wait in line for a parking spot during busy times. Wait times at the entrance station can be over an hour on the very busiest weekends and holidays.
  • Once the parking lot is full, we are only able to allow one car in while another one exits.

Rules & Regulations

Base Access Requirements


  • Valid ID card for all visitors 16-years of age and older
  • Driver of vehicle must be able to produce valid vehicle registration and proof of insurance
  • Visitors can access the base as a pedestrian or on bicycle with a valid ID
  • Not allowed on base: Illegal drugs, alcohol, contraband and weapons
  • Possession of contraband will result in denial of access to the base
  • Visitors must be able to pass a background check

NOTE: Visitors with an authorized government ID will be allowed to drive directly to Cape Henry Lighthouse.

Allowed Items on the Shuttle

  • One small handbag per visitor
  • Infant bag as appropriate
  • Infant stroller if applicable

NOTE: All other items will need to remain in vehicles.

Authorized Sites to Visit on JEBLCFS

  • Old Cape Henry Lighthouse
  • Cape Henry Memorial National Park Service

Upon arrival at the gate, guests need to inform base security personnel that they are visiting Cape Henry Lighthouse and produce the required documentation as noted in “Base Access Requirements” above. Security personnel will direct guests to parking adjacent to the gate. Visitors will proceed to the awning area for a security check before boarding the shuttle to be transported to the historic sites.

Upon completion of visiting the historic sites, guests will need to board a shuttle to return to their vehicle at the designated parking area.