On Shetlands you’re never too far from the sea (North sea or the Atlantic). So when we spotted a white sandy beach
we just had to divert our route and go straight down. Too bad the air had only 12 degrees and the sea not more than 15, in the middle of summer :). But at least we had the beach for ourselves.
Lerwick – the Shetlands capital has about 7,000 inhabitants and serves as the main port. It has a small but delightful city centre. Like many other similar-size Scottish towns, it has several pubs, fish & chip shops, cafes and decent souvenir shops selling tweed and tartan goods, whisky, local cosmetics etc. It’s lively and offers decent night life too :). On top of all this Lerwick has a nice modern museum that is worth a visit even on a sunny day – the Shetland museum.
Boat trip and wildlife
One of the highlights of our trip was a 3-hour boat excursion to enjoy the islands from the sea and to explore the Shetland’s wildlife – seals and gannets.
We went to the Head of Noss cliffs with a huge gannet colony with the Seabirds and Seals Cruises and we really enjoyed it, although the North Sea proved to be rather rough that day. Update: The Seabirds-and-Seals http://www.seabirds-and-seals.com is permanently closed for business.
Trek around Eshaness
Another beautiful day found us hiking along the magnificent cliffs of Eshaness, battered by the Atlantic. Constant stream of its waves created deep inlets (geos) and underground caves in the rock, some of them hundreds of meters inland.
Atlantic storms created also this beautiful tombolo – a double-edged beach – connecting a small St Ninian’s Isle to the Shetland Mainland.
Vistas – constantly changing but always magical.
Mavis Grind is a narrow strip of land dividing the Atlantic from the North Sea. It’s so narrow, they say, that you can throw a stone from one to the other.
Ponieeeees, stop, stop! Finally we got to see some of these iconic little marvels. None had a cardigan as on postcards though. What a disappointment… But maybe it’s because it’s a middle of summer and 12 degrees :)
At the end an example of a mighty Broch. Shetland islands are indeed a magical place.