Shetland otter by Mike Pennington

Five reasons why Shetland is great!

To celebrate the Year of Young People 2018 NorthLink Ferries ran a writing competition for P6 and P7 pupils in Orkney and Shetland. We asked them to tell us five reasons why they think either the Orkney or Shetland Islands are a great place to visit.

Picking a winning article from Shetland was extremely hard, but we’re sure you’ll agree with our choice; written by Ailee Burgess, aged 11, from Tingwall Primary School, as it is brilliant!

Seals in the seas around Shetland

Reason one: The sea life

There are tons of things going on at the sea every day in Shetland, from people fishing for the finest fish to the animals under the sea. You can see the cute little otters swimming around near the piers or the big seals bobbing their heads up now and again. Some people spot killer whales as well. I love going on boats and wet suiting.
Otter Photo © Mike Pennington (cc-by-sa/2.0)

Frankies Fish and Chip Shop in Brae, Shetland

Reason two: The food

I absolutely love the food in Shetland. It’s outstanding. There are lots of places that you can go to get a bite, but the most popular place is Frankie’s fish ‘n’ chips. Frankie’s has amazing fish and chips. So good that they won the UKs best fish and chips award. Trust me they’re fantastic. Also the puffin poo from the Shetland Fudge Company. It’s got a coconut coating too. You get a lot of great tasting food from the street in Lerwick as well.

Commercial Street in Lerwick, Shetland

Reason three: The Street

Commercial Street in Lerwick is so lively and has tons of cool shops, like High Level Music and Harry’s Toy Shop or the Shetland Times Bookshop. We normally get a lot of cruise ships coming at the pier just there at the Street. Even Mr Stripy goes there (Mr Stripey is an ice-cream van). There’s this cat called Tom and he goes around all the shops and lies in the window displays. There is a tourist office where you can get all types of cool knick-knacks.

Up Helly Aa vikings

Reason four: Vikings

The Vikings are really well known in Shetland. Every year we have this huge festival called Up Helly Aa. It’s held at the start of the year. The biggest fire festival is in Lerwick but there are many others, such Nesting and Girlsta and Scalloway. You dress up in Viking clothes and guizers get torches for the procession and at the end they have to throw them into the galley. I’m in the Scalloway one in 2019 and I’m so excited.

Fair Isle landscape, Shetland

Reason five: All the little islands

I love going to the islands from the Shetland mainland. You have to catch ferries to get to them. I’ve been to Unst, Yell, and Whalsay. The charity shop in Whalsay is so good. You might get lost like we did so grab yourselves a map from the tourist office. You have to get a plane to Fair Isle (pictured) though and they have their own language which is cool. You should definitely go visiting some islands – they’re amazing.

I hope you liked my 5 reasons and that I have encouraged you to come to Shetland. See you soon.

Ailee BurgessBy Ailee Burgess
A pupil from Tingwall Primary School, Ailee entered the NorthLink Writing Competition and was chosen as the winner out of 215 entries. Her brilliant insider’s guide to Shetland is a fantastic read. We look forward to hearing more from her in the future!
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