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MSW Reportal

Gotska Sandön – twin lighthouses made of iron

Gotska Sandön is located in the heart of the Baltic Sea, 22 nautical miles north of Fårö. This is a large island, covered entirely by sand dunes and pine forest. Twin lighthouses were built on the north cape in 1859.

Gotska Sandön.
Photo: Dan Thunman

Extra effort was made with designing these lighthouses as the conditions for construction – with just sand to build on – were difficult. Nils Gustaf von Heidenstam tried a method using iron screw piles that were screwed into the ground. The lighthouses were made of an octagonal skeleton structure made of iron that was painted red, and these were the forerunners to what were known as the Heidenstam lighthouses. They were also the first lighthouses to be made of iron. When the technology had developed, one of the lighthouses were dismantled and removed in 1903. The lighthouse was automated in 1969-1970 and the station was demanned.

Last updated 2021-04-06