BARNEGAT LIGHT, NJ — It’s been more than a year since visitors could climb to the top of the iconic Barnegat Lighthouse, but that changed on June 10. After a closure since March 2022, the lighthouse opened again to the public, marking the completion of a $1.3 million renovation.

“It’s great to be here today because we’re part of the historic timeline now at Barnegat Lighthouse State Park,” Administrator of State Historic Sites Mark Texel told reporters outside of Old Barney Tuesday afternoon.

Since reopening on Saturday, there have already been roughly 1,000 visitors who took the 217-step climb to the top and got to see some of the most stunning views imaginable.

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Those who are unable to make that trek shouldn’t feel left out, though. As part of the renovation, cameras have been installed on top of the lighthouse. Guests can now see those views live from the park’s interpretive center. And in the coming weeks, a livestream will be available on the Department of Environmental Protection website, so you can enjoy those ocean views no matter where you are.

There was a complete exterior restoration, which includes repainting, so now the lighthouse appears brighter. Interior repairs, roof repairs, window replacements and of course, cleaning were also part of the renovations.

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A donation from the Friends of Barnegat Lighthouse supplied Old Barney with a new lantern and new aluminum security fencing that evokes a more classic style, more fitting than the previous chain link fence.

The Barnegat Lighthouse dates back to 1857, when construction began, Texel said. It was an important spot because the shoals are very dangerous, he said, so the navigation aid was critical.

“It’s important to note that this work could not be done without the hard work of the amazing Department of Environmental Protection staff who are constantly working to maintain and improve our cultural, natural and historic resources,” said Rebecca Fitzgerald, administrator of the State Park Service. “So we want to thank them all today.”

If you can’t make the trip to see the Barnegat Lighthouse right now, check out these photos to see what it’s like, and the amazing views:

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