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Wildlife Adventures – The Shetland Isles

  • Experience the landscapes and fascinating wildlife of Scotland’s most northerly islands.
  • Be amazed by the prolific birdlife at Sumburgh and the heritage of the Vikings at Jarlshof.
  • Hike to the dramatic coastline of Muckle Flugga, the most northerly point in the UK.
  • Enjoy a boat trip to view the bird colonies at Noss National Nature Reserve where we’ll be deafened by the noise of 20,000 gannets, 25,000 guillemots, 3,000 kittiwakes, 1,200 puffins and hundreds of razorbills, shags and skuas!
  • 6 nights accommodation in a country house hotel
  • Breakfast and packed lunches throughout the trip, from Day 2 through to packed lunch on Day 7 (Meals included indicated as B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
  • A boat trip to the Noss National Nature Reserve to view the prolific birdlife
  • Entrance fees to the Jarlshof centre
  • The services of an experienced and knowledgeable guide / driver throughout
  • All transport throughout the trip, starting from the ferry terminal on Day 1 and finishing there or at Sumburgh Airport.
  • All ferry transfers while on Shetland

Green Graded Wildlife Holidays 1-3

All of our wildlife trips are graded Green and involve straightforward hiking with no major ascents, as well as other activities which are pitched at novice level. You can expect to be active for around 5 hours each day so you will need a reasonable level of fitness. Please note that there may be some early starts and late nights as we seek to maximise our chances of finding wildlife, although you can always opt out of activities if you prefer an early night or long lie in the morning!

So to help you decide if you are fit enough for this kind of trip, ask yourself:

  1. Are you generally active and, for example, happy to hike for 6 miles (10km), including some ascent, with rough ground in places?
  2. Are you up for a challenge and trying new activities such as sea kayaking or boat trips?
  3. Are you looking for a wildlife trip which involves more than simply sitting in a hide?

Accommodation on this trip is at the wonderful Busta House Hotel, well regarded as the best hotel in the Shetland Isles. Located on the shore of sheltered Busta Voe on mainland Shetland, Busta House blends history, romance and intimacy with an attention to detail which makes for a perfect stay. The house was built during the 16th, 17th & 18th century and is steeped in history – it is even said to have a resident ghost!

At Busta House food plays a major role in your experience – especially Shetland produce. Shetland hill lamb, free range pork from Unst, fresh seafood from all around the islands such as Muckle Roe mussels, halibut from Bressay, Yell Sound scallops, organic salmon from Unst. Also, most recently and a world first; organically farmed cod from Johnson Sea Farms at Vidlin.

Although evening meals are not included in the trip cost, we will dine at Busta House several times during the week, where you can choose from its excellent restaurant or its extensive bar menu.

Single Supplement

There is no single person supplement charged to solo travellers however, you will be required to share a room with another person of the same sex. If you require a single room please request this at the time of booking and we will look into this for you. A single room supplement of £225 is charged if a single room is available – please see booking form terms and conditions.

Please meet your guide at Lerwick Ferry Terminal at 0830hrs on Day 1 of your trip. If staying in Shetland the night before we recommend finding accommodation in Lerwick.

Shetland is reached by an overnight ferry from Aberdeen to Lerwick (operated by Northlink Ferries). Alternatively, Flybe operate flights to Sumburgh Airport from Glasgow, Inverness, Aberdeen and Edinburgh.

Upon booking the trip, please confirm whether you will travelling to Shetland by ferry or plane. If you are flying to Shetland, please arrive the day before the trip starts to ensure a prompt start for the group on Day 1.

Customer Kudos

Every client receives a feedback survey when they return from their guided, self guided or tailor made holiday with us.

Once completed the review is published on our website just as soon as our database updates. The little touches and details are important to us and where issues are raised we make positive changes to our trips to improve your experience.

That's why we read each of our client's reviews and although we don't respond to all of them, if it's glowing feedback then we get the satisfaction of helping to make your holidays truly memorable.

5 star 36

4 star 4

3 star 0

2 star 0

1 star 0

by Brian Shuter 13/08/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
There were a few glitches that I experienced with the website initially and later some issues regarding payment of the final balance of the cost. In each case, I was able to talk to a real, courteous and helpful person quickly and got everything sorted easily. Web sites are great but having real helpful people in easy touch is a great asset so please keep it up.
Trip Comments
Our guide made the trip particularly special. Her enthusiasm for the landscape and the floral and fauna was infectious and her support for those of us that occasionally needed to walk a bit slower was much appreciated.
Accommodation and Food
We stayed in a very interesting hotel and the food and service was great. My only concern is that it would have been nice to be able, on day 1, to check into the hotel at the start of the day so that we could change into appropriate hiking/rain gear before the day 1 walk.
Your Guide
I already mentioned this in an earlier comment but our guide was great. Her enthusiasm for the places we hiked and her knowledge and interest in the floral and fauna we saw was exemplary. Also, she was always ready to accommodate particular concerns of each of the trip members and allow for the rather large range in hiking stamina that was evident in our group.
The Bottom Line
This was a great trip and I highly recommend it.

by June Toose 30/07/2017

4Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
It was just magical!
Accommodation and Food
You and our wonderful guide thought of everything, the Busta House Hotel was marvellous and their packed lunches were a highlight of each walk.
Your Guide
Kirsty was absolutely marvellous, she thought of everything, and we quickly developed such confidence in her. Her positive personality lifted even the stormiest day. A credit to herself and Wilderness Scotland.
The Bottom Line
Wonderful, magical, not to be missed, I came home on a high.

by Ethel Hickton 28/07/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
Very helpful, extremely friendly go out of their way to be helpful
Your Guide
Amazing, so well organised, does small things to please individual guests - these smaller things just make the whole experience so special
The Bottom Line
Above expectations

by Lesley Beddie 26/07/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
ready and accurate responses to my phone calls.
Trip Comments
Brilliant guide and hotel, we were well cared-for. Guide ( the excellent and ever-helpful Kirsty) adjusted our itinerary to fit the weather, she cared for us and was always cheerful and ready to listen as well as tell us about wildlife, history, flora and fauna, and something of her own life and experience. Busta House meals and packed lunches were ace, staff always cheerful and ready to accommodate all our needs. Good size tour (just 8 of us) meant that we all heard and learnt together. And Shetland was beautiful, even in the rain (first day only).
Accommodation and Food
Think I responded to much of this in the last question(!). But can't fault the hotel on anything from food and rooms, to the banter with the managers and all the other staff.
Your Guide
Can't praise Kirsty enough, nor have enough superlatives for her. She made the trip for us all.
The Bottom Line
An excellent tour with the customer really well looked-after. I've been praising the company (and Shetland) to anyone who asks ever since I got back.

by Catharine Wall 25/07/2017

4Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Kirsty was an outstanding guide
Accommodation and Food
Busta House provided very comfortable accommodation and excellent food; the daily picnic lunches were excellent.
Your Guide
Kirsty was a superb guide: her extensive knowledge of the area, together with her courtesy, humour, common sense and patience made the trip a wonderful experience for us all. She worked our schedule around the weather so not one hour was wasted - perfect!
The Bottom Line
This was my second trip with Wilderness Scotland; I am already looking forward to my third. The whole experience was superb.

by Sally Newell 27/06/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
We enjoyed our week with Ken Keith who was a great guide and company. Well organised always listened and went the extra mile
Accommodation and Food
The hotel staff made every effort to ensure we enjoyed our stay breakfast,packed lunches and dinner certainly kept us going
Your Guide
Thanks to Ken Shetland met and went beyond our expectations his efforts were greatly appreciated by all the group a lovely guy.
The Bottom Line
A great experience your ticking all the right boxes

by Anita Donley 19/06/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Well organised, balanced trips with carefully selected accommodation, and experienced guides in fantastic locations
Trip Comments
Guide's attention to each member of the group as well as group dynamic- ensuring everyone had a holiday to remember- and seeing and hearing snipe, hen harrier, otter, great northern diver
Accommodation and Food
Milngavie Bn B not up to standard- hairs in food at breakfast
Your Guide
Only evidence to proffer is that I'm on my 6th booking with you- and also booking a privately guided trip with Ken!
The Bottom Line
Consistently great

by George Fraunfelder 18/06/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
Your Guide
The Bottom Line

by Andrea Stewart 13/06/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Very cheerful voices, always willing to answer questions. Thanks!
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
The Busta House was a great spot to 'come home to' each night. The staff were friendly and helpful, the room was well appointed and the dining experience was great.
Your Guide
Our guide was a true professional. Ken was fun to be with and well organized. The trip ran like clockwork -a true acknowledgement of his attention to detail- all done with a smile on his face. His efforts created very contented clients. Ken has a broad knowledge of flora, fauna, culture and history of Scotland. He willingly answered our endless questions! He truly cares that his guests thoroughly enjoy their holiday.
The Bottom Line
The Wilderness Scotland team is a well oiled machine! They know their stuff and serving their clients is of utmost importance to them.

by Sue Everatt 12/06/2017

4Pre-Trip Service

4Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
I think the price should include the cost of all the meals but not drinks and the entrance fees (where applicable) to museums, etc.
Accommodation and Food
The Busta was perfect; the building was traditional, the food was very good in particular the fish dishes and the staff couldn't have been more attentive.......charming. The packed lunches were excellent, they even prepared generous salad bowls.
Your Guide
Ken was good company and managed the Group and all our walks, museum visits and dinner arrangements with great care.
The Bottom Line
We thoroughly enjoyed the whole holiday. We flew in from Aberdeen Airport and landed at Sumburgh Airport that in itself was an experience. We took a taxi from the Airport to Lerwick and this cost £45.00, for the return journey we used the number 6 bus which cost £5.80! The Shetland people were very friendly and chatty. All in all together with the cost of the flights to and from Shetland this holiday cost us around £4000.00. Having said all that we saw birds too numerous to mention, plenty of open spaces, rare orchids, seals and a sea otter we also had such fun with the others in the group, we were sad to bid them farewell.

Prices and Departures

82 people viewed this trip in the last week1 Booking in the last 72 hours

Book with confidence - we guaranteee our trips to run as soon as 2 people book.

2018 Trip Dates

Trip Date
Price
Availability
Trip Status
 
28th Apr - 4th May 2018
£1,695
6 place(s) left
5th May - 11th May 2018
£1,695
6 place(s) left
12th May - 18th May 2018
£1,695
Trip Full
2nd Jun - 8th Jun 2018
£1,695
Trip Full

Trip Details

Join us on an unforgettable journey to the Shetland Isles, a little-visited archipelago of more than 100 exposed islands lying far north of the Scottish mainland, as close to Norway as they are to Scotland.

People have worked the land and sea around Shetland for 5000 years, leaving a mysterious legacy of ruined forts, ancient houses and standing stones.

In the company of your highly knowledgeable guide you will gain privileged insight into the unique history and natural world of Shetland as you explore the varied landscapes of these isles on day hikes to their wildest and most dramatic places. Here, you will experience the incredible wealth of birdlife, marine life and wild flowers that in the wild places of these intriguing islands.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1 – Walking in the Shetland Isles

Travel to Shetland and meet your guide for this walking holiday in the Shetland Isles. We drive north to the little island of Muckle Roe where we enjoy a stunning coastal walk to North and South Ham. (D)

Day 2 – Coastal Walk on Shetland Isles

One of the best coastal walks in Shetland is found just a short drive north of our hotel at the superb headland of Eshaness. Here we will explore the fascinating coastal scenery around the Villians of Ure, the Grind of the Navir and the Holes of Scraada. (B, L)

Day 3 – Jarlshof and Bird Watching on Shetland

We visit Jarlshof pre-historic site and a walk to Sumburgh Head RSPB Reserve for some birdwatching. We enjoy a wonderful coastal walk with excellent views of sea bird colonies including gannets, auks and bonxies. Whales can also be spotted offshore. If time permits, we will explore the Ness of Burgi Stone Age Fort. (B, L)

Day 4 – Walking on the islands of Yell and Unst

Travel by ferry to the islands of Yell and Unst where we walk to Muckle Flugga, the northern-most tip of Britain and the world’s largest bonxie breeding colony at Hermaness. (B, L)

Day 5 – Bird-watching cruise to Noss & Bressay

The cliffs of Noss and Bressay are a haven for seabirds. In one of the world’s prime locations for bird-watching, the Noss National Nature Reserve is home to 20,000 Gannets, 25,000 Guillemots, 3,000 Kittiwakes, 1,200 Puffins and hundreds of Razorbills, Black Guillemots, Shags and Skuas. We’ll enjoy a cruise round the spectacular cliffs in what is sure to be a highlight of this trip. (B, L)

Day 6 – Walking up Ronas Hill: Shetland’s highest peak

Today we head into the most northerly part of Mainland Shetland, climbing through an Arctic landscape to the summit of Ronas Hill, Shetland’s highest peak at 450 metres. This is a great place to look for mountain hares in their natural environment. (B, L, D)

Day 7 – Coastal Walk on St Ninian’s Isle

Back in South Mainland we head over the tombolo to St. Ninian’s Isle for great views out to the island of Foula, before heading into Lerwick for a short walk around The Knab. (B, L)

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Prices and Departures

82 people viewed this trip in the last week1 Booking in the last 72 hours

Book with confidence - we guaranteee our trips to run as soon as 2 people book.

2018 Trip Dates

Trip Date
Price
Availability
Trip Status
 
28th Apr - 4th May 2018
£1,695
6 place(s) left
5th May - 11th May 2018
£1,695
6 place(s) left
12th May - 18th May 2018
£1,695
Trip Full
2nd Jun - 8th Jun 2018
£1,695
Trip Full

Price from: £1,695

Next trip: 28th April

Duration: 6 night(s)

View prices & departures

Location: Orkney and Shetland Isles

Comfort: Classic

Difficulty: 2

40 review(s)

Trip Photos

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Trip reviews

Customer Kudos
This was a great trip and I highly recommend it.

Brian Shuter
13/08/2017

5

Wonderful, magical, not to be missed, I came home on a high.

June Toose
30/07/2017

5

Rated 4.9 out of 5 based on 40 review(s) of Wildlife Adventures – The Shetland Isles

5 star 36

4 star 4

3 star 0

2 star 0

1 star 0

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