Lerwick is by far the largest town in Shetland and - with its fine museums and the shops and facilities at the heart of its old town - it is a real hub for visitors. Just a short ferry hop across the Sound is the island of Bressay - so near and yet, with the quiet pace of island life, it feels like a world apart. Bressay is also a stepping stone en route to another island - the spectacular National Nature Reserve and great seabird colonies of Noss - a must see for all visitors to Shetland.
West of Lerwick is Shetland's original capital - Scalloway, with its great ruined castle. This area is the gateway to three smaller islands, all linked by bridges - West Burra which has some fine beaches, East Burra, and Trondra.
Further north and west is Westside, an area little known to outsiders but in fact boasting perhaps the finest cliff scenery in all Shetland - which is saying a lot! Off the coast is remote Papa Stour which may seem flatter and low lying, but on closer inspection has scores of arches, stacks and sea caves to discover for those willing to make the effort to reach it.
|Staneydale Temple||1.5km||45 minutes|
|Lerwick Explorer||6km||2 hours|
|Meal Beach and Hamnavoe||4.5km||1.5 - 2 hours|
|Culswick Broch and the Burga Stacks, Culswick||6km||2 hours|
|Houss Ness, East Burra||6.25km||2 - 3 hours|
|Scalloway and Bur Wick||6.75km||2 - 3 hours|
|Banna Minn beach and Kettla Ness, West Burra||7.75km||2.5 - 3 hours|
|Moul of Eswick and Ling Ness, South Nesting||7.75km||2.5 - 3 hours|
|Island of Noss National Nature Reserve||8.25km||3.5 - 4.5 hours|
|Westerwick coast, from Silwick||8.5km||3 - 3.5 hours|
|Papa Stour: the coastal circuit||17km||5.5 - 6.5 hours|
|Sandness Hill and Deepdale cliffs, Netherdale||10.75km||3.5 - 5 hours|
|Ward of Bressay and Kirkabister Ness, Isle of Bressay||12.5km||4 - 5 hours|