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Tower of Hercules

The ancient but well-preserved lighthouse has operated since Roman times


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The oldest Roman lighthouse which is still in use today is called The Tower of Hercules and is located on a peninsula, about 2.4 km (1.5 mi) from the centre of Corunna, Galicia, in the north-western part of Spain. The lighthouse is 55 m (180 ft) tall and overlooking the Atlantics. It was built in the 2nd century and renovated in 1791. Being a National Monument of Spain, the Tower of Hercules is also in the UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2009.

The lighthouse got its name because of a myth, according to the myth it was built on a spot connected to Hercules. In the Twelve Labors of Hercules myth, the hero killed the giant Gerylon with an arrow dipped in Hydra’s blood. Hercules then buried the giant and ordered to build a city on top of it, the same spot where the lighthouse was built, later surrounded by the city of Corunna.

Today the Tower of Hercules has a sculpture garden featuring the works of Pablo Serrano and Francisco Leiro. You can also visit the basement with the original Roman lantern of the lighthouse.

Visits to the Tower are available all year. But Corunna is located in the coastal area, and it experiences quite a lot of cold, windy and rainy weather. The best time to go is May to October as it offers more amiable weather than the other half of year. August is particularly praised for long and warm days, ideal to relax on the beach and visit the Tower of Hercules. However, at times along with July, August can be hot and crowded.

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