Alleppey Light House

Alleppey Light House

alappuzha light house

The Alleppey Lighthouse is situated in the coastal town of Alappuzha, Kerala. It was built in 1862 and is a major tourist attraction. Visitors are allowed between 1500 hours and 1630 hours on every weekday.

Alleppey (Alappuzha), the place where India’s Alleppey Lighthouse stands, was one of the busiest ports and trade centers of Kerala. Alappuzha, a part of Travancore, was ruled by Rajas of Erstwhile Travancore before India’s independence. After the arrival of the Portuguese, Dutch and English traders, Vizhinjam, Kollam, Travancore and Purakad were the main ports of Erstwhile Travancore through which foreign trade flourished. The decline of the Port of Purakkad necessitated the rehabilitation of the traders for which Alappuzha was selected as a port and an infrastructure was developed. The port was opened to foreign traders in 1792.

Alleppey Light House
Alleppey Light House Aerial view

There was no regular lighthouse providedin the 18th century-only a light, provided on the pier head served the mariners. As port activities increased, the authorities had to provide for a lighthouse. The construction of the present lighthouse began in the reign of His Highness Marthanda Varma-II Maharaja (ruler of Travancore) and was completed during the reign of His Highness Rama Varma Maharaja of Travancore.

Light House Alleppey
Full view of Alleppey Light House

The first stone was laid by Mrs. Mough Crawford on April 26, 1860. The 30′ high lighthouse has a teak spiral staircase. A 1st order optical equipment with coconut oil double wick lamp light-source supplied by M/s. Chance Bros.Birmingham was installed and commissioned into service on 28 March 1862. The same equipment continued to serve till 1952 when it was replaced by 500 mm drum optic and DA gas flasher of AGA make. The current 4th order optic with a 1000 watt electric lamp was installed in 1960. The mains supply was extended to the station in 1960, this enabled the installation of an electrically operated 4th order revolving optic system supplied by M/s BBT, Paris, this replaced the old equipment and was commissioned on 4 August 1960. The direct drive system was incorporated on 8 April 1998 and a separate emergency light in 300 mm lantern on 30 December 1998. The incandescent lamp was replaced by 230V 150W Metal halide lamp on 28 February 1999. The lighthouse is still a manned station. The lighthouse, which was painted plain white, was repainted in red and white bands in 2000.