Up Helly Aa 2025

6 DAYS

Trip Info


Adult
from$1625
Concession
from$1625

Few have heard of it, let alone been. Our destination is the remote islands of Shetland in the far north of Scotland for one of the most incredible festivals in Europe. On the last Tuesday of January this traditional winter festival marks the lengthening of the days and the dawn of another year. Classic Scottish dancing, traditional Shetland music, the boat burning ceremony and torchlight procession makes for an unforgettable experience.

Please note that for our Up Helly Aa 2025 tour, the Ferry from Aberdeen to Lerwick is in quad-share accommodation (four people in one room). You can upgrade to a private twin-room (two people in one room) at the time of booking.

Highlights

  • World-famous Up Helly Aa 2025 Viking Fire Festival
  • Viking Parade and Longboat Burning
  • Royal Braemar
  • Time in Lerwick to Visit the Shetland Museum
  • Breath-taking Scenery of the Shetland Islands 
  • St Andrews, The Home of Golf
  • Traditional Music Sessions

Inclusions

  • Passionate Local Guide
  • 2 Overnight Ferries (Quad-Share Cabin – Upgrade to Twin-Share available at the time of booking)
  • 3 Nights Hotel (Twin-Share)
  • 3 Full Scottish Breakfasts
  • Free Time in Lerwick
  • Guided Tour of Shetland

Explore More

  • The Shetland Museum, Lerwick (free)

 

Accessibility and Facilities

For more information, see our Accessibility Statement.

Terms and Conditions
The cancellations fees are levied from periods of notice given prior to confirmed/nominate departure date as % of the total trip fare. Cancellations outside up to 22 days before departure 50% fee. Cancellations 21 days before departure incur a 100% fee. This product does not qualify for a deposit option - full payment is required at time of booking. 

 

Tour Map

Select a date to book!


Mon
Tue
Wed
Thu
Fri
Sat
Sun

Available
Full

Limited Seats

"Best adventure of my travels so far! Our guide, Dougie, led us on a fantastic tour up to Shetland, sharing with us his long standing passion for this wonderful festival.The torchlight procession at the festival was unforgettable. The Vikings were fantastic as was the sense of community throughout the event. Either side of Up Helly Aa we saw the stunning scenery of Shetland and mainland Scotland. Thanks Dougie and the people of Shetland for a brilliant adventure!"

CL, February 2019

Tour Video


Itinerary


DAY ONE: EDINBURGH TO ABERDEEN

Leaving our capital city of Edinburgh, we stop to view the Forth Bridge, opened in 1890 for the passage of trains heading north. We then travel on through the Kingdom of Fife with its stunning coastal scenery before stopping at the ancient university town of St Andrews. Known as the Home of Golf, the town also boasts the magnificent ruins of a 12th-century Cathedral. We then travel on to Aberdeen via Dunottar Castle, perched dramatically on the edge of the North Sea, and board the ferry for the overnight journey to the Shetland Islands. (Overnight: Ferry)

DAY TWO: LERWICK

After sailing into Lerwick we spend the morning enjoying the main town of Shetland including a visit to Clickimin Broch. After a visit to Scalloway Castle, we spend the rest of the afternoon exploring the islands of Burra and Trondra and the stunning Meal Beach before we return for a night out in the Shetland capital! (Overnight: Lerwick)

DAY THREE: LERWICK

After a leisurely start to the day, we will make our way to the stunning beach at St Ninians’s Isle. We then visit Jarslhoff, one of Scotland's finest prehistoric sites, before moving on to the stunning cliffs and sea views at Sumburgh in the far south of the island. We return to Lerwick to prepare for the main event with some celebrations in town with the locals. (Overnight: Lerwick)

DAY FOUR: LERWICK

The big day! You get to watch the junior Jarl Squad (young Vikings) have their own parade before the main event. Vikings make their way through the streets culminating in the ceremonial burning of a full-size replica Viking Long Ship. Your guide will be available throughout the day to make sure you don’t miss any of the world-famous festival. (Overnight: Lerwick)

DAY FIVE: LERWICK TO ABERDEEN

Our final day on Shetland will take us to Tingwall, site of the ancient capital of Shetland. We then visit the peninsula of Lunna. This stunning area was base for the clandestine World War 2 operation, the Shetland Bus which used fishing boats to smuggle spies, saboteurs, radios, ammunition and explosives into Norway. We will then head to Eshaness, known as the wild west of Shetland. This area has some of the most spectacular coastal scenery in Shetland. We’ll return to Lerwick to board the overnight ferry back to Aberdeen. (Overnight: Ferry)

DAY SIX: ABERDEEN TO EDINBURGH

We make our way through Royal Deeside and pass Crathie Kirk where the Royal Family worships when at their Highland residence. We also visit the resting place of John Brown, ghillie to Queen Victoria and made famous in the movie Mrs Brown starring Billy Connolly and have ample time to visit Braemar for lunch.  Our return journey takes us through the Cairngorms National Park and Royal Braemar before arriving back in Edinburgh.

THE WORLD-FAMOUS TORCHLIGHT PROCESSION

Around one thousand torch-bearing guizers in full Viking uniform march through the streets with the Galley past the spectators. The town is in darkness as the streetlights are switched off, the red glow at ‘light up’ is truly a phenomenal sight.

Tour Map

Select a date to book!


Mon
Tue
Wed
Thu
Fri
Sat
Sun

Available
Full

Limited Seats

Departure


Departure point:

60 High Street (The Royal Mile)

Edinburgh

EH1 1TB

Scotland

See Map

Departure Time

Check-in closes at 7.45am for tour departure at 8.00am. 

We are unable to hold the bus or refund for any late arrivals. Please refer to your e-ticket for full departure details.

Return Time

Tour returns at approximately 5.30pm.

Accommodation


Accommodation is included in the price of your trip. 

Two nights in a quad-share cabin on the ferry (upgrade to twin-room available at the time of booking) and 3 nights in a local 3* Shetland Hotel (twin/double room). 

 

ACCESSIBILITY & FACILITIES 
For more information, see ourAccessibility Statement under ‘Essential Info’.