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Thread: Shetland 2021

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    Shetland 2021

    Hi,

    My partner is planning a trip to Shetland in 2021 for her BSAC Advanced Diver expedition. She has already received prices from a few of the Scapa liveaboards that also operate out of Shetland. However, to add to her knowledge and planning we are looking for other options and a wider understanding of the area.

    • Are there any charter boats based in Shetland?
    • When is the best time of year to go (we have heard June-August)?
    • Where is the best place to stay if we decide to go land-based?
    • What are the best dive sites?
    • Recommendations of other things to do when not diving?
    • What is essential/what to avoid?

    Plus any other relevant thoughts you may have that could help the trip.

    Thanks!

    Nigel

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    Established TDF Member Energy58's Avatar
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    I worked there for a while but didn't dive - onshore is nice enough but there isn't much to do other than the pub and the obvious "nature" type things and the thrill of being the most northerly person in the UK (I fell off a bridge while talking on my mobile and I am pretty sure I was the most northerly person doing that!) but that wears off pretty fast.

    Last time I looked there was a HUGE amount of construction work going on and accommodation was extremely thin on the ground so probably worth checking but by 2021 its probably going to be done if not complete already. If shore based do not under-estimate the distance/time for road journeys, especially involving multiple ferrys - particularly to/from Unst: I almost missed the ferry on a couple of occasions due to neglecting this.

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    Team Starburst Ian@1904's Avatar
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    Shetland

    I was on the Halton touring round Shetland two years ago.
    In my view touring round on liveaboard is the best option. If you choose the Halton, Bob the skipper will stop off at various places allowing you to explore various places of interest.
    There are some lovely wrecks up there including E49, Jane, Gwladmena and the scenic stuff is rather good too. Froach Ban is normally your check out dive. Ex-trawler, stunning dive.
    https://www.mvhalton.co.uk/shetland/

    Although there are other options catching the overnight ferry from Aberdeen is a good call.

    Shetland is remote. The people are very friendly. There are no trees to speak of.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Energy58 View Post
    I worked there for a while but didn't dive - onshore is nice enough but there isn't much to do other than the pub and the obvious "nature" type things and the thrill of being the most northerly person in the UK (I fell off a bridge while talking on my mobile and I am pretty sure I was the most northerly person doing that!) but that wears off pretty fast.

    Last time I looked there was a HUGE amount of construction work going on and accommodation was extremely thin on the ground so probably worth checking but by 2021 its probably going to be done if not complete already. If shore based do not under-estimate the distance/time for road journeys, especially involving multiple ferrys - particularly to/from Unst: I almost missed the ferry on a couple of occasions due to neglecting this.
    A lot of people forget that, once you leave the central belt of Scotland, you are on roads that have been neglected for decades so you will take a lot longer to travel even short distances. There are a number of factors:
    1) traffic volume means it is not worthwhile widening/upgrading certain roads
    2) a lot of highland and island roads follow the contours of the land instead of going a straighter route - what looks a short trip could easily be double the time with switchbacks, hills etc.
    3) even major trunk roads such as the A9 are, to a large extent, single carriageway meaning that you can easily get caught behind a haulier or tractor and spend 20 minutes before you find somewhere to pass (even longer if you wait for somewhere safe).
    4) Once you get off the trunk roads, you can often be on single track roads with passing places.
    5) On a lot of highland and island roads, they cross common grazing land which effectively means that you can have livestock crossing the road or even sitting in it.

    If you are relying on sat nav for timings up north, I would allow a lot more time (depending on how far of the main routes you are going).

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    One of the biggest factors to realise about Shetland is there are NO dive shops, so no repairs or spares. Also air fills are harder . There is a dive club in Shetland with its own rhino & compressor .
    I trust my rebreather implicitly I just don't trust the owner

    Onwards & downwards.

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    Quote Originally Posted by colinicky View Post
    One of the biggest factors to realise about Shetland is there are NO dive shops, so no repairs or spares. Also air fills are harder . There is a dive club in Shetland with its own rhino & compressor .
    Wow, pet Rhino in Shetland. Bet it feels the cold. 😄

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    Quote Originally Posted by John63 View Post
    Wow, pet Rhino in Shetland. Bet it feels the cold. ��
    Oh hell , a drink & predictive text are not a good mix ! I meant Rhib.
    I trust my rebreather implicitly I just don't trust the owner

    Onwards & downwards.

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    Established TDF Member Energy58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by colinicky View Post
    Oh hell , a drink & predictive text are not a good mix ! I meant Rhib.
    I preferred rhino...

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    TDF Member Simples !'s Avatar
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    I went twice on Valkyrie. Getting to Shetland is easier then to Scapa. Drive to Aberdeen to catch an overnight ferry to Larwick. You arrive there on Sunday morning and dive by noon. We had a brilliant time the first time, went north. Unfortunately when we went two years later weather was crap and Hazel didn't fancy leaving Larwick. So we dived lots of boulder walls covered in kelp.

    Sent from my H8314 using Tapatalk

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    Did a week up there in 2017. Dived off and lived on Halton. Didn’t miss a day of diving, however one or two of the other boats up there at the time didn’t venture out on occasion due to the conditions.

    Just done a week at Scapa, on ferry home now. First time there, but on Halton again. Not the most spacious boat, however it would be my first choice in future.
    Last edited by Tribal Chestnut; 05-10-2019 at 09:03 AM. Reason: Tidied


 
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