Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse

The 19 m high Cape Leeuwin Naturaliste lighthouse is located on the tip of Cape Naturaliste in the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park. The lighthouse was built in 1903 by a contractor. The lighthouse was built from limestone blocks which were quarried from an area near Bunker Bay and then carted to the site via a bullock drawn wagon.

The light of the lighthouse is approximately 133m above sea level and has a range of 25 nautical miles (app 40kms). The Cape Naturaliste isn't as high as the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse which stands at the other end of the park, but is high enough to still sway in strong winds.The lighthouse has been struck by lightning numerous times but there has been no recorded deaths.

An interesting feature of the lighthouse are the wooden teak steps which are the only ones in Australia.The heavy lamps of the lighthouse float in a bath of liquid mercury which makes it very easy for them to rotate. Before it was discovered that mercury vapours were highly toxic, the lighthouse keeper would filter the mercury without any protective clothing at all. Unfortunately one of the side effects of mercury poisoning is madness and thus for many years it was believed that mercury was the reason why many lighthouse keepers went mad. I think isolation, lightning strikes, swaying and ghosts could be other great reasons too!

There are believed to be two ghosts haunting the lighthouse cottages. Harry haunts the visitors centre whilst Mary is content to haunt the caretakers cottage. Harry is reportedly been heard walking around the rooms.

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