Mainland Shetland | Colin Nutt

About

Explore 370 square miles of beautiful and surprising landscape. From the glorious St Ninian's Isle tombolo to the dramatic Eshaness cliffs, Mainland Shetland has a rich heritage and vibrant community. Discover its birdlife and plant life; the otters and whales which play in its waters; its iconic ponies; its music and knitwear; its history, extensive archaeology and geology.

Famous For

  • The Island’s capital, Lerwick, is home to Up-Helly-Aa - the biggest fire festival in Europe - however there are several smaller winter fire festivals throughout the Mainland celebrating the Viking heritage of Shetland.
  • Over 1,000 miles of spectacular coastline offers everything form dramatic cliffs, stacks and arches which are home to an amazing array of birdlife, to beautiful beaches such as the stunning tombolo (double sided beach) leading to St Ninian’s Isle.
  • The TV crime drama series ‘Shetland’ has brought the island into living rooms across the globe but, thankfully, the island experiences very little serious crime and Lerwick's historic, old town is a million miles away from the onscreen version of the island.

Ask an Islander

  • Islanders have knitted for centuries with Fair Isle and fine lace knitting being specialities and Shetland Wool Week, held each autumn, attracts hundreds of enthusiasts from all around the world.
  • Music is at the heart of Shetland life and the annual Folk Festival in spring and Fiddle and Accordion Festival in autumn showcase a wealth of local talent alongside a selection of visiting acts.
  • Shetland's amazing geology has brought Geopark status to the islands, and walking is by far the best way of appreciating the extraordinary landscape.

Accommodation

Check out the following accommodation listings to book your stay.

Visit Scotland accommodation

Shetland Visitor accommodation

More Information

You can find some additional information about Mainland Shetland at the links below

Promote Shetland

COVID-19

Please check the latest rules on travelling to and around the Scottish islands on the Scottish Government website, including guidance on testing before you travel. Please note that advice may vary depending on the specific island you are visiting.

Getting here

Covid-19

Please check the latest rules on travelling to and around the Scottish islands on the Scottish Government website, including guidance on testing before you travel. Please note that advice may vary depending on the specific island you are visiting.


Daily (overnight) ferries from Aberdeen to Lerwick are operated by NorthLink Ferries. Some trips go via Orkney.

Daily flights from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen airports to Sumburgh Airport are operated by Loganair.

Get Your Passport

You can find lots more information about things to see and do on the island, see some amazing island photography and collect your island stamp by downloading our app.

Download the app

App in phone

Download the Scottish Island Passport app to collect your island stamps! The app also provides lots more information on each island including recommendations from locals about things to see and do, info on how to get around, more stunning photos and useful offline maps.

  • Unlock Stamps - Collect them all! Stamp your passport when you visit each island - with an individual stamp designed to represent a unique aspect of island heritage.
  • Experiences - Discover the best experiences each island has to offer – from local boat trips to exciting traditional festivals, there is something for everyone.
  • Maps - Navigate the islands with useful offline maps, handy for areas where internet connectivity is weak.
  • Travel Jounals - Create an in-location travel journal with pictures from your island adventures, to look back on your trip.
  • Favourites - keep track of your most loved islands with the favourites feature. Available to access from your account on both the app and web.