May 17, 2024

Contis lighthouse

Phare De Contis

During your stay at our 5-star campsite in the Landes, don’t miss a visit to one of the Landes’ jewels: the Contis lighthouse. This is just 15 km from our campsite.

A visit to the Contis lighthouse plunges you into the maritime history of the Landes region, while discovering an architectural heritage steeped in history. But it’s also an ideal opportunity to admire a splendid panorama of the Atlantic Ocean and the Landes forest.

A monument rich in history

Wondering what to see in the Landes? The Contis lighthouse, located in Saint-Julien-en-Born, is an emblematic monument in the Landes region. Erected in 1863 by Napoleon III, it met a crucial need to secure this stretch of coastline, particularly feared by sailors for its numerous reefs and capricious currents.

The Contis lighthouse first shone in 1863, becoming a reliable beacon between Arcachon and Capbreton. Initially powered by oil, it was modernized over the years, switching to electrification in 1949.

During the Second World War, this Landes monument was almost destroyed, only its lantern being bombed by German forces.

Originally immaculate white, since 1937 it has sported two black spiral stripes, the work of the local artist nicknamed “Menoune”. This ornamentation gives it a distinctive look that can be seen from afar.

The only lighthouse in the Landes

At 39 meters high, the Contis lighthouse plays a crucial role not only in navigation, but also as guardian of the region’s maritime memory. What makes it special? It’s the only lighthouse in the Landes department. Its cylindrical structure, made of local stone called garluche, majestically dominates the forest and remains the region’s emblematic lighthouse.

Today, the Contis lighthouse attracts visitors not only for its history, but also for the panoramic view it offers from its summit. To reach the dome, you’ll have to climb a 184-step cast-iron staircase, but you’ll soon forget the effort in front of you: the ocean as far as the eye can see, the Landes forest and a ribbon of fine sand bordered by dunes.

Visit Contis Lighthouse

Practical information

Can’t wait to visit this major Landes monument? The Contis lighthouse is open to visitors from April to September, according to the following schedule:

  • April, May, June: open Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays from 2pm to 6pm;
  • July and August: open Tuesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • September to early October : open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 2pm to 6pm.

To visit the lighthouse, you’ll need to pay €3 per adult and €1 for children (aged 3-12). Admission is free for children under 3.

Good to know: you can also take part in a guided tour of the Contis lighthouse. It’s ideal if you want to learn all you can about the history of this monument!

In any case, a permanent exhibition awaits you inside the lighthouse. You’ll find a museum dedicated to the history of the site. This museum exhibits sculptures of Augustin Fresnel, the pioneer of the lens used in lighthouses, and Charles-François Beautemps-Beaupré, the Navy’s famous hydrographic engineer. This is an excellent opportunity to deepen your knowledge of the significant impact these personalities have had on the development of lighthouse and beacon systems.

For further information, please contact

To get to the Contis lighthouse from our campsite, take the D167 and then the route de Contis/D41 towards the boulevard du phare.

Get ready for a pleasant visit to this not-to-be-missed monument in the Landes!