Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Scotland - Shetland Islands

Handy Quick Links to our Blog Highlights

How We Got Started | How We Do It | Countries and Territories Visited | USA Adventure | Iceland The UK Adventure | Our Travel Club Arrives in Paris | Capitols of N. Europe and Scandinavia | Russia and the Trans-Siberian Railway | South Korea | Japan | Australia | Bali & Indonesia | Malaysia | Singapore | Macau-Hong Kong | Southern China |  Zhangjiaije National Park | Central China | Terracotta Warriors | Pandas | Tibet | Nepal | India | Uzbekistan | Kazakhstan | Georgia | The Balkans | Eastern Europe | Italy | Ireland Scottish Highlands and Outer Islands 

After nearly missing our boat because of a confusion with the time, we made it back into Aberdeen with 30 minutes to spare.  We booked POD seats for the overnight ferry to the islands instead of a cabin.  They looked great online...not so comfortable for a twelve hour trip.  The seats didn't recline as far back as we had hoped and it was a toss-n-turn night.  The boat was lovely with a couple of bars and a good cafeteria style restaurant that served a decent, tasty meal.
It was a bit of a rough crossing, Nettie did not fair well, and the rest of us got a bit queasy.  We arrived bright and early into Lerwick, capitol of the Shetland Islands and its most populous city...all 6,000 of them.  We contacted our rental car company and they were dispatched to pick us up at the terminal.  The sun was shining and it was warm.  
It took us ten minutes to get to the tourist office and by then the temps had dropped and it was sleeting.  Later it turned to snow...and then back to spring.  Four seasons in the span of two hours.
With a plan formulated we headed out to discover the island.  We drove an hour south of the city to the southern most point.

Once again the sun came out just as we reached the lighthouse.

We parked and walked up the hill to the lighthouse and a nice public museum.

These are nigs, cousins to the puffins and looked a lot like cormorants.  They were very busy building nests.
The lichen was bright orange and all over the side of the mountain.
The views of course were stunning.

This rock pile looked like Jabba the hut from Star Wars.
Black Shetland ponies.
Nest we drove up the coast to Ninian Island, connected to the main island by a long sand bar.  We hiked out to the island and back.

For lunch we drove up the coast to Frankies, voted BEST fish and chips in all of the UK.

We order fish and chips...wonderful...and a full bot of steamed mussels...equally grand.
We ended our day drive at the norther end of the main island.
A grand rock.
Dramatic coastline.

Back in Lerwick we found out B&B and checked in.  We were so stuffed, we did not venture out for dinner and opted to watch a bit of TV before an early bedtime.  We woke to another lovely day...at least it started out that way.  We headed out to Scalloway to visit the museum and castle/  Along the way we stopped to chat with some friendly sheep.

Even friendlier ponies.

The museum was great and we spent well over an hour.  One exhibit in particular caught our attention, the Shetland Bus, a group of local fisherman who formed a ferry system between the islands and the coast of Norway to aide in the evacuation of Norwegians fleeing the Nazis during WWII.
The castle was in good shape and we were able to tour some of the lower cambers and get up into the great hall.

Our day ended back at the ferry terminal where we returned out car rental and boarded the ship for our return to Aberdeen.

No comments: