Photographer's Note

Slangkop Lighthouse means ‘snakehead lighthouse’ when it is translated directly into English and also is commonly referred to as the Kommetjie lighthouse.

This Slangkop Lighthouse measures 33 metres tall and is made from sleet. Did you know that this lighthouse is the strongest and tallest cast iron lighthouse on the South African Coast…? Well it is, and has become a popular tourist visiting spot.

The slangkop lighthouse has been operational since March 1919 when it was lit for the very first time. In 1936 the original light was replaced by a 4KW electric lamp… In 1974 that was replaced by a 1.5KW light. And in 1975 the Slangkop lighthouse became fully automated – it lets off 4 flashes of light every 30 seconds. The central point of the Slangkop Lighthouse is located 41 metres above the water ensuring that all ships will see the light coming from it. This lighthouse is so big that it is even visible through the thick mist that frequents the Kommetjie area and the light covers an area of 33 sea miles.
This lighthouse was built because the governor of the Cape of Good Hope, the honourable Sir Frances Hely Hutchinson, wanted to decrease the amount of ship wrecks that were frequenting the Kommetjie shore lines and coastal areas. The lighthouse proved to be a very helpful icon and navigational feature for the sailors in the area. The area around the lighthouse is extremely rocky and very deceptive... the lighthouse forms a great warning and navigational method for the ships.

The inside area of the lighthouse is empty and only contains a stair case and a generator for the light/s. The outside is painted white with a smooth surface which has proven to be an enjoyable surface for abseiling. The views from the top of this Slangkop Lighthouse are ‘far stretching’ and include beach and coastal views of Kommetjie and Long beach… the climb to the top of this lighthouse is steep, but is well worth it for the views.

The Slangkop Lighthouse area falls into the Table Mountain National Park’s Marine Protected area which was proclaimed in order to ensure the sustainable use of marine resources and provide protection for the varied species found in our oceans.

From "Kommetjie on line"

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Additional Photos by Ben Broughton (benbroug) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 78 W: 0 N: 54] (811)
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