If stoic service in harsh, fog-bound, rocky locales inspires admiration of the New England lighthouses, the towers of the Atlantic coast have a unique charm all their own. Because the beaches are at sea level, the towers were built tall to raise the focal plane of the light.

On New York's Long Island are two fine lights. Montauk Point Light is a wonderful 200-year-old lighthouse at the eastern tip of Long Island. Closer to New York City is the tall, gracefull, and restored Fire Island Lighthouse.

The historic colonial-era Sandy Hook Lighthouse at the entrance to New York's harbor is the first stop. Forty-five miles south of Sandy Hook is Barnegat Lighthouse, known as "Old Barney." Heading further south, we visit New Jersey's towering Cape May Light, the nearly unknown lighthouses of Delaware, including Fenwick Island Lighthouse, and the Harbor of Refuge Lighthouse at Lewes.

The charm of Chincoteague, Virginia with its Assateague Lighthouse is worthy of an extra-long visit. Crossing the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel you can almost look over to the east and see Cape Henry Lighthouse at Virginia Beach. While we're crossing the Chesapeake Bay, let's take a sidetrip to see the classic screwpile style at Drum Point Lighthouse.

Crossing into North Carolina, we can't resist the call of the Outer Banks before our stop in Charleston, South Carolina. The old Charleston Lighthouse has been replaced by a modern beacon, but the charms and gentle hospitality of the Charleston area makes it a "must see." Finally, on the Georgia coast there are two major towers: the colonial-era lighthouse at Tybee Island, and St. Simons Light, which reflects the elegance of St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island to the south.

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