The island of Noss is renowned as one of Europe’s finest wildlife sites. Its 180 metre high sea cliffs – dramatic at any time of year – come to life in summer when tens of thousands of seabirds return here to nest. This small island has one of the most easily reached seabird colonies where you can experience these wonderful creatures close-up.
The dramatic island of Noss with its towering cliffs supports an incredible array of nesting seabirds. In spring and summer, gannets, guillemots, fulmars and kittiwakes congregate on the cliffs. Great Skuas, which nest further inland, can also be seen hunting their prey overhead. Follow the coastal path which meanders through wildflower-strewn grassland and keep a watchful eye for porpoises and otters offshore.
The coastal path is the most popular route for visitors to explore Noss. Leaving from the visitor centre, it follows a grassy surface around the coast (6 miles), climbing steadily to the highest cliffs at 180m.
An alternative to this is to miss the steepest section by walking to the viewpoint overlooking Charlie’s Holm before returning the same way to the visitor centre (4miles) – still allowing good views of the cliffs.
How To Get Here
There is an hourly car ferry from Lerwick to Bressay (visit www.shetland.gov.uk/ferries), then follow Noss signs for three miles to the car park. From here, take the SNH boat for a three minute crossing. The SNH boat operates between 11am and 5pm each day in summer (except Mondays and Thursdays). Please call this information line 0800 107 7818 to check if the ferry (which is weather dependant) is running that day.
By Bike: Local bike hire is available in Lerwick which is on the National Cycle Network Route 1 (Aberdeen - Shetland). Leave the route at Lerwick and take the car ferry to Bressay. Follow the signs to Noss (3.5 miles to Noss Sound).
On Foot: There are no national long distance routes in the area. It is possible to walk on quiet surfaced roads from the Bressay ferry terminal to Noss Sound. (4 miles including 0.5 miles on unsurfaced track to the ferry).