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© The Hebridean Explorer

St Ninian's Isle, Shetland

5 Day Shetland Tour

A stunning five day private tour from Inverness through the East Highlands to the Shetland Islands.

Day 1 – Departing from Inverness we spend the morning exploring the four thousand-year-old burial cairns and standing stones at Clava, along with a visit to Culloden Battlefield and visitors centre. Our journey east includes the stunning seven hundred year old ruins of Elgin Cathedral and the Pictish standing stones of the area. We arrive at Aberdeen harbour by the late afternoon in time to board overnight sailing to Lerwick in Shetland (departing at either 5.30pm or 7pm depending on travel dates).

Day 2 – Arriving in Lerwick harbour in the early morning (7.30am), we enjoy breakfast on the ferry before exploring the south mainland of Shetland. Sumburgh Head is our first stop – a haven for seabirds (including puffins from May to July). Next is Jarlshof Prehistoric and Norse settlement which spans over four thousand years. The afternoon takes us on a beautiful coastal drive to the breath-taking St Ninian's Isle where you can hike across the sands to the island. Returning north we end the day at the Clickimin Broch before our overnight stay in Lerwick.

Day 3 – A day to explore the most northernly inhabited island in Scotland – Unst. Departing from Lerwick we drive north to catch the 20-minute ferry crossing to Yell. After a scenic drive through Yell we take the short 10-minute ferry crossing to Unst. We spend the late morning and early afternoon exploring the island, with visits to Muness Castle, Haroldswick, Burra Firth and Saxa Vord, before our return to Lerwick in the late afternoon.

Day 4 – Departing from Lerwick we head towards the north Shetland mainland. Arriving at Eshaness we savour the dramatic cliffs and sea stacks of Shetland’s stunning coastal landscape. We then enjoy a scenic drive around Scalloway and Burra before returning to Lerwick. The afternoon includes a visit the Shetland Museum and some free time to meander through Lerwick town and harbour. In the late afternoon we board the ferry from Lerwick for an overnight sailing to Aberdeen on the Scottish mainland.

Day 5 – Arriving in Aberdeen harbour in the early morning (7am), we enjoy breakfast on the ferry before heading south to explore the dramatic ruins of Dunnottar Castle. Our journey back to the Highlands takes us through Speyside where we enjoy a tour and tasting at Benromach malt whisky distillery (optional) before our arrival back in Inverness by the mid-afternoon.

Price on Request

Departure days

  • Monday
  • Tuesday
  • Wednesday
  • Thursday
  • Friday
  • Saturday
  • Sunday

April — October

Contact details

The Hebridean Explorer


Tour information


  • Inverness


5 Days


  • Driver guide


  • Bespoke
  • Private


  • English


  • Ancestry
  • Archaeology
  • Castles
  • History
  • Island Hopping
  • Landscapes
  • Wildlife

Tour Stops

The Hebridean Explorer

Tour company information

The Hebridean Explorer

The Hebridean Explorer (John Alasdair Macdonald) has been an independent private tour guide for over fifteen years specialising in private guided tours for small groups (up to 3) from Inverness covering the Scottish Highlands and Islands including the Outer Hebrides, Isle of Skye, Orkney and Shetland.

Opening times

March to October, Monday to Sunday 9am to 5pm

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