Home Newsletter Locations Diary
Topic Alpha County Sections By

Travellers Resource
Lighthouse Section Lighthouse Index . England & Wales Scotland Ireland Isle of Man Channel Isles


England & Wales Scotland Ireland

Copinsay Lighthouse

Copinsay, Orkney Isles

Location Guide

Aerial Photo Marinas.com (more images available)

Copinsay is a small island about 3 miles southeast of Point of Ayre on the east side of the Orkney Mainland. Formerly inhabited, it is now uninhabited and along with three smaller islets it is now a sanctuary owned by the RSPB.

The island has nearly a mile of vertical cliffs up to 76 metres high and is mainly covered in grass, with 10 hectares of arable, hay and pasture managed as cover for corncrake. More than 1,000 pairs of fulmars nest on the vertical cliffs as well as other seabirds such as 20,000 guillemots, 700 razorbills, 600 puffins and about 4,500 pairs of kittiwakes, and also Black guillemots, shags, great black-backed gulls, and Arctic terns. In the breeding season there will also be eiders, twites, wheatears and ravens. Also on the wildlife and fauna front during the autumn, a colony of around 2,000 grey seals come ashore to pup and there are colonies of oysterplant and sea aster on the islands. Because of it's location and size it is not open to visitors.

The lighthouse is located on the highest point of the island, and although it is not open to visitors and cannot be visited it should be visible from Point of Ayre or from ferries approaching the main Orkney mainland.

Lighthouse information Grid


Copinsay Lighthouse, Orkney Isles

Current status:


Geographic Position:

58 53.784'N   002 40.349'W

Grid Reference:


Ceremonial County:

Orkney Isles


White tower with 41 steps to the top of tower, with buff trim, lantern painted black. One storey keeper's house and other buildings.

Map Link:


Aerial photo:


Other photos:

photo closeup   Geograph

Originally built:


Current lighthouse built:


Height of Tower:

16 metres

Height of light above mean sea level:

79 metres

Character of light:

Flashing (5) White every 30 Secs

Character of fog signal:


Range of light:

21 nautical miles

Owned / run by:

Northern Lighthouse Board

Getting there:

only by boat


site and tower closed



Other Useful Websites:


Other Relevant pages:

For more articles, lists and other information see the Lighthouses Section

Lighthouse Map of Scotland

Featured List of lighthouses - Scotland 

List of minor lighthouses and lights - Scotland  



Please let us know any other information that we can add to the Grid or page and any errors that you discover. Before making a long trip to any location it is always wise to double check the current information, websites like magazines may be correct at the time the information is written, but things change and it is of course impossible to double check all entries on a regular basis. If you have any good photographs that you feel would improve the illustration of this page then please let us have copies. In referring to this page it is helpful if you quote both the Page Ref and Topic or Section references from the Grid below. To print the planning grid select it then right click and print the selected area.

Please submit information on locations you discover so that this system continues to grow.


By: Tracey Park  Section:  Lighthouses Section Key:
Page Ref: Copinsay Topic: Lighthouses Last Updated: 06/2010


This page:

Link directly to this page, with text or the button on right.

Text linking: Copinsay Lighthouse on Photographers Resource

Linking Instructions                            http://www.photographers-resource.co.uk/

Photographers Resource, all the information for the photographer