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How disappointing. We missed Lerwick on our recent cruise, although it wasn't announced pre-cruise. I knew something was wrong when I saw the lighthouse on Bressay island (on the way to Lerwick) and it was on the wrong side of the ship. We were heading away from Lerwick. Captain said the weather inside the port area wasn't good. This was not on Royal Caribbean, but I guess it happens on all cruise lines once in a while. At least you'll have a day in Invergordon. We just had another day at sea (ugh).

 

 

 

We rented a car in Invergordon and drove around Loch Ness area. It was fairly easy to drive around there, and I enjoyed going to the castle that's near there.The town of Invergordon was mildly interesting, too - fun murals on buildings, and artists selling things in a community center, where there was also Wifi and free or inexpensive computer use.

 

 

We've been to Loch Ness, Urquadt Castle, Culloden Battlefield, etc. We'll find some other castle or just go to Inverness. Was looking forward to Lerwick. Thanks for your suggestions and information on Invergorden.

 

 

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Rasmie,

 

I just found this thread and am so happy I did.

 

Thank you for all the information and pictures of your beautiful island.

 

I'm chomping at the bit in anticipation of my 2018 Celebrity cruise that stops in Lerwick!

 

Thanks, again.

 

Suee

Dallas, Texas

 

Hello Sue. Are you on the Sept 20 2018 departure? We are. . .

Jeanette and Jay

Raleigh, NC

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I'm having trouble finding a tour company to book a tour with. I'm coming in on a Princess Ship Mon Sept 4, 2017 Just from 9-5 Tender, So the time is even less. Will there be buses/van's available to book a tour when we get off or do I need to prearranged on ? If so can someone recommend a company that will do 4 hour tours or less ?

 

 

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I'm looking for the same thing for our celebrity cruise in September 2018. Neither DH or I can walk long distances anymore, nor do we want to rent a car and drive 'on the wrong side of the street'. ;) Had enough of that in South Africa.

 

We're a bit weary of ruins, but love seeing such beautiful, unfamiliar scenery.

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For both posters who are asking about tours: There are a few cab companies that do tours, but I'm not aware of any actual tour companies - but of course I may be wrong about that. As I probably mentioned before, we rented a car from Bolts and drove around part of the mainland island (where Lerwick is). You may want to just email or call Bolts and ask them if they do cab tours or know anyone who does. I found this info and put it in my notes for next (hopefully!) visit to Lerwick, but I don't know if the information is accurate, as I didn't contact either company: AlliedTaxis is main company 01595-690069, also gives tours, also shetlandtaxis.co.uk I doubt there will be any tour companies at the tender or ferry dock when you get there, but again I could be wrong. It appears from the Lerwick town center webcam, plus we found it to be true, that there are cabs waiting at the dock, although I don't know how much they would charge for a 3-4 hour driving tour. (Save a little bit of time for Lerwick, though, especially if you can walk enough to do a bit of exploring. If not, I suppose a quick drive through the town will do.)

 

I assume you've looked at Trip Advisor, right? They usually have at least a few reviews of tour companies, if the city you're visiting has tours.

 

Be aware that on occasion ships can't go into Lerwick due to weather/water conditions. I wouldn't pre-pay for a tour, although normally tour companies don't ask you to.

Edited by roothy123

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Hi this is queeniy1.... I was planning on using “ Sinclair Taxis” to take us around Shetland Island but Princess never ported to Lerwick Shetland Island. They were unable to tender to this port due to weather conditions.

 

 

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Brilliant thread. We are going to visit Shetland on a cruise in July and have found so many tips! Going to hire a car, can't wait:)

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Also excited about visiting the Shetland Islands on a June cruise on the Norwegian Jade. We will be hoping to find a taxi/tour before we go. Also a fan of the mystery series "Shetland". I am trying to get my hopes too high as this stop seems to be frequently cancelled.

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Don't just walk around the town. Take a tour to see the island. The scenery is fantastic.

 

We took a wonderful private tour.

http://:www.shetlandgeotours.com

 

 

I had found this tour on the roll call from the 2013 Star cruise. The tour had great reviews. We were not disappointed.

 

The tour was described as follows:

 

Lerwick, Shetland Islands, led by well-known island native Allen Fraser of Shetland GeoTours. It will be so much more than geology, combining history and archeology with local lore acquired from over 60 years of living in this beautiful land.

 

After visiting Clickimin Broch, an Iron Age defensive tower near Lerwick, we'll head north for a drive through Girlsta and Petta Dale on our way to the picturesque village of Voe, then across the Mavis Grind, a piece of geological history and Shetland's narrowest point at only 90 yards from coast to coast, on to Ronas Voe (Shetland's fjord) and finally to Eshaness cliffs and sea stacks (Shetland’s volcano), some of the most stunning scenery on the islands.

 

The tour can accommodate a total of eight people with one bus, or if we have enough people, we can add another bus of eight people for a total of 16.

 

We did book a tour for 16 and had two buses with Allen driving and guiding one bus and James the other bus. The tour was super and included the islands history, geology and stunning scenery. We had a wonderful lunch of soup and sandwiches for only £5. After the tour, we had a little time to browse around Lerwick, which was a quaint town. The population of the islands is about 23,000. The North Sea oil industry has added to the economy, but sheep farming appears to be the primary economic activity. We saw many sheep on our tour, as well as some Shetland Ponies. The ponies were more rotund than the one’s in the USA.

This was a great tour

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We are in port for 12 hours so want to see as much as possible. Have arranged car hire through Bolts, very quick response from them.

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Rasmie

We arrive on the Rotterdam in early July and feeling very fortunate to be spending our day with David Malcolm. We’ll be seriously disappointed should weather conditions keep us from arriving.

 

We watched the Shetland series on US Netflix last year and it really peaked our interest. It’s a great show!

 

Thanks for all your tips!

 

 

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Docking in Lerwick? This is a great thread for 1st time visitors to Lerwick and for fans of the Shetland TV series. (season 5 just announced!). Question: Has anyone done, or known of, docking at a pier in Lerwick? NCL still has it listed at a docking port and I don't think I believe it. Know things can change closer to the arrival date but I do think everyone tenders in.

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Docking in Lerwick? This is a great thread for 1st time visitors to Lerwick and for fans of the Shetland TV series. (season 5 just announced!). Question: Has anyone done, or known of, docking at a pier in Lerwick? NCL still has it listed at a docking port and I don't think I believe it. Know things can change closer to the arrival date but I do think everyone tenders in.

Most ships do anchor and tender, however, I know Viking Ocean was supposed to dock there. I say "supposed" because when we got there, the captain said the conditions weren't right and decided not to dock (or anchor). But at least up until that time, we were scheduled to dock. You'll likely dock up near the northern ferry port; not much farther than where you'd be tendered to if the ship anchored, but perhaps a little bit less convenient in my mind. I'm not sure if a shuttle is offered, but I believe either the town or some cruise lines offer it. If you're going down to Market Cross (tourist information, etc.) I don't think it's a horribly long walk to there from where a cruise ship will dock.

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Most ships do anchor and tender, however, I know Viking Ocean was supposed to dock there. I say "supposed" because when we got there, the captain said the conditions weren't right and decided not to dock (or anchor). But at least up until that time, we were scheduled to dock. You'll likely dock up near the northern ferry port; not much farther than where you'd be tendered to if the ship anchored, but perhaps a little bit less convenient in my mind. I'm not sure if a shuttle is offered, but I believe either the town or some cruise lines offer it. If you're going down to Market Cross (tourist information, etc.) I don't think it's a horribly long walk to there from where a cruise ship will dock.

I just got off the Celebrity Eclipse and we were in Lerwick last Thurs May 17. It was a tender operation to get ashore.

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I am looking for cruise line suggestions for summer 2019 that includes the Shetland Islands, Orkney Islands even possibly Faire Isle. We do not like party ships with huge passenger numbers. I have been searching and saw Hebridean. However with air fare added on, I am afraid it is outside of our budget. We have already been to Iceland, Norwegian Fjords and know Britain well. I saw the Black Watch, the Balmoral and the Magellan. I tried to get a feel if any would been a match but reviews have only served to confuse me more. We love Cunard and we liked Celebrity. However many of the cruise lines we would be interested in spend little time in the Islands. Any thoughts, suggestions will be greatly appreciated. We like good food, love looking at the ocean and scenery and don't drink much.

Sadly, our travel agent passed away some time ago.

Thank you in advance.

 

 

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We love cruising on two lines - Oceania and Viking Ocean (part of Viking Cruises). Neither is exactly inexpensive, but both are good value considering what you get. (Oceania usually throws in airfare, as long as you're not terribly picky about what they get for you. If you are, you have choices.) Viking provides a free overview excursion in each port other than (often) the embarkation and disembarkation ports, plus free beer and wine at lunch and dinner. Both include free internet and (somewhat limited) specialty restaurant dinners, and both are great lines. Viking's cheapest cabin is great, and Oceania's is too, except that it's an inside with no veranda - not acceptable to many people.

 

We took Viking Ocean on a British Isles cruise that included Lerwick (Shetland) and Kirkwall (Orkney). Some ports on the itinerary we took would probably be repeats for you, given how much you've traveled. (I'm jealous!) However, I just thought I'd mention those two cruise lines, as I think you would like both. (My likes seem similar to yours, except that I found Celebrity to be barely "OK.")

 

There are a couple cruise or travel agency websites you can use to enter a specific port you're interested in. If you can find those, it might help you find a cruise line that goes there. Then, of course, you have to weed out the lines that you likely wouldn't care for.

 

Perhaps a smaller line like Seabourn goes to more islands in your target area. Of course, the smaller the ship, the more pricey the cruise becomes!

 

We're not allowed to recommend travel agents on here, or I would. I love the company I use. It's a big cruise-only company, but service and knowledge are great.

 

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Edited by roothy123

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We love cruising on two lines - Oceania and Viking Ocean (part of Viking Cruises). Neither is exactly inexpensive, but both are good value considering what you get. (Oceania usually throws in airfare, as long as you're not terribly picky about what they get for you. If you are, you have choices.) Viking provides a free overview excursion in each port other than (often) the embarkation and disembarkation ports, plus free beer and wine at lunch and dinner. Both include free internet and (somewhat limited) specialty restaurant dinners, and both are great lines. Viking's cheapest cabin is great, and Oceania's is too, except that it's an inside with no veranda - not acceptable to many people.

 

We took Viking Ocean on a British Isles cruise that included Lerwick (Shetland) and Kirkwall (Orkney). Some ports on the itinerary we took would probably be repeats for you, given how much you've traveled. (I'm jealous!) However, I just thought I'd mention those two cruise lines, as I think you would like both. (My likes seem similar to yours, except that I found Celebrity to be barely "OK.")

 

There are a couple cruise or travel agency websites you can use to enter a specific port you're interested in. If you can find those, it might help you find a cruise line that goes there. Then, of course, you have to weed out the lines that you likely wouldn't care for.

 

Perhaps a smaller line like Seabourn goes to more islands in your target area. Of course, the smaller the ship, the more pricey the cruise becomes!

 

We're not allowed to recommend travel agents on here, or I would. I love the company I use. It's a big cruise-only company, but service and knowledge are great.

 

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Thank you so much for your suggestions. We will be cruising on the Insignia NE/Bermuda trip this summer. It was last minute but we are looking forward to the Oceania experience.

My Mom was from England. So we were fortunate to be able to visit family and friends and expand our visits.

We did several Rhine cruises with KD. I believe Viking acquired the part of the company that did 5-7 night trips. They were so amazing, we were repeat travelers. It was all inclusive featuring wines/beers and food from the areas we traveled through. Lots of historical commentary. I will definitely research them and also see what Oceania. Cunard looks like it only makes one stop in Lerwick.

 

 

 

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Thank you so much for your suggestions. We will be cruising on the Insignia NE/Bermuda trip this summer. It was last minute but we are looking forward to the Oceania experience.

My Mom was from England. So we were fortunate to be able to visit family and friends and expand our visits.

We did several Rhine cruises with KD. I believe Viking acquired the part of the company that did 5-7 night trips. They were so amazing, we were repeat travelers. It was all inclusive featuring wines/beers and food from the areas we traveled through. Lots of historical commentary. I will definitely research them and also see what Oceania. Cunard looks like it only makes one stop in Lerwick.

 

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We took Viking's "Into the Midnight Sun" this June. In addition to traveling up the coast of Norway, we had stops in Lerwick (Shetlands) and Kirkwall (Orkneys). We docked at both ports and there was a free shuttle provided by the tourist services in each, which took 5-10 minutes to get into town. We were able to walk into town in Lerwick in about 20-30 minutes, if walking is an option. I don't know if a larger ship would be able to dock, one of the advantages of Viking's smaller ships.

 

We loved both ports and really enjoyed Viking Ocean. It was our first cruise with Viking Ocean, after having been very pleased with a trip on the Rhine with Viking River.

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I think most past Viking River cruisers love Viking Ocean. However, you DO need to keep in mind that an ocean cruising vessel, even a smallish one, has to do things a bit differently than a river cruise ship. You may not be off the ship 5 minutes after it pulls into port, and you'll usually be required to be back on board 30 minutes prior to departure of the ship. While you get an included tour in most ports, just like Viking River, an ocean cruise liner typically goes to a greater number of large cities. In places like Rome and Athens, you may be a bit disappointed with the included tour Viking Ocean offers. With up to 1250 passengers (or whatever VO ships hold) being offered a free tour, the scale of the tour usually results in a scaled-back tour, or perhaps just a tour that is done mostly by bus with limited stops to get out, go inside a building, etc. It's easy to love the fact that VO gives a free tour in most cities, but I try not to get stuck in planning to go on all of those. If I really want to see more, I plan my own day, or take the included tour and then go off on my own, or spend a little money and take an optional Viking tour, or private tour, or whatever. That would especially be true if you don't like being part of a large excursion production, where numerous groups of people are assembled in the theater prior to going off on their excursion.

 

I imagine there are some Viking River cruisers who take one ocean cruise and decide it's not for them. However, if you stick only to river cruises, you're limiting the number of places you can go.

 

But I digress! I think you'll love both Viking and Oceania.

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