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About Shetland

St Ninian's Isle, by John Pedley ( 

Photo: St Ninian's Isle, Shetland, by John Pedley (

Many people want to come and live in Shetland, bringing their families into a close-knit community where people care about the environment.

If you are one of these people, then contact us and we will work closely with you to find or build your dream home.

The following provides a brief outline of life in Shetland, but if you have further questions around living, working and relaxing in Shetland, then take a look at

Where and what is Shetland?

Shetland is a collection of over 100 islands, situated some 100 miles from the north coast of the Scottish mainland. In Shetland you are never more than 5km (3 miles) from the sea.

The following video brings our colourful islands to life.

Culture and Music

We are proud of our Scandinavian roots – the islands were part of Norway for hundreds of years – and this is evident in our distinct dialect.

Elaborate fire festivals, like Up Helly Aa, which happens every January, are a reminder of our more distant Viking past.

Music is integral to Shetland and there a variety of festivals that take place to rejoice in this. There is the Folk Festival, the Blues Festival, the Fiddle and Accordion Festival, and many more.

Oil discovery

When oil and gas were discovered around Shetland in the early 1970s, the Shetland Islands Council ensured the islands received more than their fair share of the profits.

Leisure and Activities

Oil income and oil-related development ensured improved infrastructure and improved quality of life. Shetland now enjoys world-class leisure facilities and a healthy culture around sporting groups and associations.

The Arts

A further bonus of the oil money is the ability for the Shetland Islands Council, the Shetland Amenity Trust and Shetland Arts to commission and build award-winning venues like the Shetland Museum and, as the following video explores, the forthcoming music and arts centre, Mareel.

Nature and Wildlife

In Shetland we are lucky to have wildlife at every turn – whales, seals, otters, the infamous Shetland pony, and an abundance of birds. Often it can be seen from your very doorstep.

Our unique position in the world sometimes brings about illuminating night skies. In Shetland you are treated to the dancing colours of the aurora borealis (northern lights).

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