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“Up Helly Aa” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Shetland Wildlife

Shetland Wildlife
Ranked #3 of 6 things to do in Sumburgh
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: With over 21 years of experience we are the No.1 choice for birding, mammal-watching, botanical, photographic & walking holidays in Shetland. We are also the only award-winning eco-tourism holiday business resident in Shetland. Visit us online - our site is packed with wild ideas and a choice of 40 wildlife-filled holidays. Day tours plus tailor-made & bespoke packages also arranged for individuals / groups plus boat trips, exclusive hide photography and wildlife sound recording. We also operate a portfolio of wildlife-watching and photography holidays overseas to Finland, Norway, France, Spain, Poland and Hungary. Fully Bonded by the CAA: ATOL 9151.
Worcester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Up Helly Aa”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 February 2016

We have been visiting Shetland for 20 years but never in January for Up Helly Aa. Having just completed a Shetland Wildlife Tour which included this spectacle, we cannot wait to return. The wildlife watching,even at this difficult time of year, yielded Arctic Hare, wonderful views of a feeding otter, a roosting long-eared owl, as well as black bellied dipper and little auk. Additionally, there were long-tailed ducks, divers, scoters, close up and personal seals and more. The day of Up Helly Aa exceeded all expectations. The whole day in Lerwick was exciting with processions and photo opportunities with the Guizer Jarl and his squad. The evening itself was spectacular: the sight of nearly 1000 burning torches processing around unlit streets; the darkness full of sparks; the smell of the torches; the growing excitement as the galley took its place in the centre of everything; the crescendo of singing as the fire consumed the Viking ship. We cannot wait to go back! Nothing is too much trouble for Hugh and Judd and their local knowledge is second to none.
Just a word of advice. To enjoy this trip to its utmost, you need binoculars and warm and waterproof clothing. Lerwick is above 60N. You will be outside for most of the day whatever the weather. Be mindful also that travel plans can be disrupted by storms and allow extra time. Don't be put off. Shetland is a magical place and you will receive the warmest of welcomes by Shetlanders who enjoy their Fire Festival as much as visitors do.

Visited January 2016
Helpful?
1 Thank Rosemary04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hugh H, Owner at Shetland Wildlife, responded to this review, 9 February 2016
Thank you for taking the time to write a review and share your experience of travelling with Shetland Wildlife. We really appreciate your comments and are delighted you had another successful trip with us. We strive to offer the best wildlife-viewing and customer service levels for our travellers. We look forward to welcoming you back to Shetland and thank you once again for choosing Shetland Wildlife.
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143 reviews from our community

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English first
Crawley, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
40 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Up Helly A Tour 2016”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 February 2016 via mobile

We had a wonderful few days with Shetland Wildlife.

The tour consisted of two days of (mainly) bird watching and some marine mammals.

Regrettably, I am not a twitcher, nor, having grown up in very wet Lancashire, am I too find if Force 6-7 gales and a LIT of rain.
That was my fault - I should have realised that This would be the case in Shetland in mid-January.

Both Hugh and Judd Hunt were experts in their field and it was an honour to spend time with them.

Nothing was too much trouble for them and they made the trip worthwhile.

I think that I was too unknowledgeable, too cold and too wet to gain the most from the experience.

I thoroughly recommend this tour to avid bird watchers and those tolerant of potentially poor weather.

Visited January 2016
Helpful?
Thank NW11851
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hugh H, Owner at Shetland Wildlife, responded to this review, 9 February 2016
Thank you for taking the time to write a review and share your experiences of travelling with Shetland Wildlife. It was a true pleasure to guide you and introduce you to the wildlife that lives in the islands we so proudly call home. We strive to offer the best wildlife-viewing and customer service levels for our travellers and positive feedback such as yours makes us want to work even harder and harder - and maybe even try and fix the weather!
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Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
27 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Great trip to see otters, seals etc”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 February 2016

Had a great trip with Hugh to see otters, birds, white hares, seals at amazingly close quarters etc, in the gorgeous Shetland countryside.

Hugh was brilliant with our group of 8, ensuring that we all had lots of opportunities to see the wildlife in the lovely countryside.

One suggestion would be to get a microphone so when driving and talking those in the back of the vehicle can clearly hear the commentary, as otherwise those in the back seat will miss out.

Visited January 2016
Helpful?
Thank Rac12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hugh H, Owner at Shetland Wildlife, responded to this review, 9 February 2016
Thank you for taking the time to write a review and share your experience of travelling with Shetland Wildlife. It was a pleasure to guide you and introduce you to the wildlife that lives in the islands we call home! We sincerely hope to see you again in the near future and thank you once again for choosing to travel with Shetland Wildlife.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Woking, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Up Helly Aa & Winter Wildlife”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 February 2016

A first class and completely faultless service from start to finish. Our guides Hugh and Judd were extremely knowledgeable, enthusiastic and had a great sense of humour. Their guidance was invaluable in both the wildlife spotting and getting the most out of Up Helly Aa, ensuring that we knew where to be at the appropriate times to get the best views and then transporting us efficiently away afterwards. The evening spectacle was utterly amazing experience and the climax to an extremely memorable and enjoyable holiday. The trip was very well organised from initial booking process, meeting us at the airport, clear guidance on the day's activities, through to the journey home. We stayed on independently for a few days after the trip and Hugh kept in touch with help and advice when our travel plans changed due to storm Gertrude. I thoroughly recommend Shetland Wildlife and will certainly be booking another of their trips before too long.

Visited January 2016
Helpful?
1 Thank Cathy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hugh H, Owner at Shetland Wildlife, responded to this review, 9 February 2016
Thank you for taking the time to write a review and share your experiences of travelling with Shetland Wildlife. It was a true pleasure to guide you and introduce you to the wildlife that lives in the islands we so proudly call home. We strive to offer the best wildlife-viewing and customer service levels for our travellers and positive feedback such as yours makes us want to work even harder and harder. Thank you once again for choosing Shetland Wildlife as your holiday provider.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
“Winter wildlife trip for group celebrating Paula's 50th Birthday”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 January 2016 via mobile

Service was excellent from start to finish. Good communication, and a great tour tailored to our interests, with a perfect mix of wildlife, scenery and bit of geology. Otter cubs and mum feeding and playing was a highlight, along with mountain hare, 28 seals and of course Shetland's beautiful and dramatic coastline. A big thank you to Hugh! Really enjoyed it, and would love to come back.

Visited January 2016
Helpful?
Thank LaraAntonia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hugh H, Owner at Shetland Wildlife, responded to this review, 9 February 2016
Thank you for taking the time to write a review and share your experience of travelling with Shetland Wildlife. It was a pleasure to guide you and introduce you to the wildlife that lives in the islands we call home! We sincerely hope to see you again in the near future and thank you once again for choosing to travel with Shetland Wildlife.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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