Cape Melville Lighthouse

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Cape Melville Lighthouse
Cabo Melville Lighthouse 1892.JPG
Cape Melville Lighthouse
Cape Melville Lighthouse is located in Philippines
Cape Melville Lighthouse
Location Balabac Island, Palawan, Philippines
Coordinates 7°49′02.7″N 117°00′10.6″E / 7.817417°N 117.002944°E / 7.817417; 117.002944Coordinates: 7°49′02.7″N 117°00′10.6″E / 7.817417°N 117.002944°E / 7.817417; 117.002944
Year first constructed 1892 (first)
Year first lit n/a (current)
Deactivated n/a (first)
Construction stone tower (first)
fiberglass (current)
Tower shape octagonal prism tower with balcony and lantern (first)
cylindrical tower with flared top (current)
Markings / pattern unpaiunted tower, white cupola
Height 27.5 metres (90 ft) (first)
20 metres (66 ft) (current)
Focal height 90 metres (300 ft)
Original lens first-order Fresnel lens
Range 28 nautical miles (52 km; 32 mi)
Characteristic Fl W 5s.[1]
Admiralty number F2152[2]
NGA number 14540[2]
ARLHS number PHI-014[3][4]

Cape Melville Lighthouse is a historic lighthouse located in the island of Balabac, the southernmost point of the province of Palawan in the Philippines. It is also the southwest corner of the archipelago. The first-order light was constructed by the Spaniards to light Balabac Strait, the treacherous body of water that separates the Philippines from the neighboring country of Malaysia.

The light is displayed from a 90-ft tall (27.4 m) granite tower, located on a hill 1.5 miles northwestward of the tip of Cape Melville, for a total elevation of 297 ft (90.5m) above sea level. The station was built by the Spanish Government as part of their extensive lighting plan for the archipelago. The lighthouse of Cape Melville was first lit on August 30, 1892.[5]

Lighthouses in the Philippines are maintained by the Philippine Coast Guard.

Current condition[edit]

The Spanish lighthouse is no longer in service and a white aluminum prefabricated tower with modern solar-powered light was erected near the grounds of the old tower by the Philippine Coast Guard. Because the station is still manned, the original lights and lenses are still intact except for a central glass pane which was stolen by vandals. The tower still retains its original clockwork but is inoperative.[6]

National Historical Landmark[edit]

The lighthouse (or Minarit) located at Brgy. Melville in Balabac Island, Palawan was declared as a National Historical Landmark by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Coast Guard District Palawan
  2. ^ a b List of Lights, Pub. 112: Western Pacific and Indian Oceans Including the Persian Gulf and Red Sea (PDF). List of Lights. United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. 2009. p. 190. 
  3. ^ "Cabo Melville (Isla de Balabac) Light". World List of Lights, Amateur Radio Lighthouse Society. Retrieved on 2010-06-28.
  4. ^ Cape Melville Lighthouse The Lighthouse Directory. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Retrieved March 12, 2016
  5. ^ Por Algunos Padres de la Mision de la Compañia de Jesus en Estas Islas, "El Archipiélago Filipino, Collecion de Datos", pg.527. Washington Imprenta del Gobierno, 1900.
  6. ^ Noche, Manuel Maximo Lopez del Castillo. "Lonely Sentinels of the Sea: The Spanish Lighthouses in the Philippines". España, Manila: UST Pub. House, 2005.
  7. ^ "Cape Melville Lighthouse". National Registry of Historic Sites and Structures of the Philippines. Retrieved on 2013-04-28.

External links[edit]