Shetland festivals

Some of the festivals and events in Shetland

The largest and best-known Up Helly Aa Fire Festival is in Lerwick and it is held on the last Tuesday in January every year. However, between January and March, a total of 12 communities across Shetland also hold Up Helly Aa fire festivals.



Walls Up Helly Aa is held on the second Saturday in March. This if different from other fire festivals in that the local Brownies organise the event. The children and their families make their costumes, and the galley – built by a local craftsman and reused each year – is led in a torchlit procession.


Shetland Young Fiddler of the Year is usually held at the end of April.

Shetland Folk Festival

Midsummer. This time is called the simmer dim. There is no true darkness between mid-May and the end of July, only a twilight as the sun briefly dips below the northern horizon. Check out the Shetland Times for locally organised events, including the annual Mid-Summer Carnival in Lerwick.

Shetland Nature Festival

Shetland Folk Frenzy

August is the month in which local agricultural shows are held. They are a great opportunity to see in one place the best of Shetland sheep, ponies and cows as well as wonderful homebaking and handicrafts, especially knitting. (which is sometimes for sale at the end of the show). Voe is the first , followed by Walls, then Cunningsburgh and Unst at the end of the month.

Shetland Boat Week
Exhibitions, talks, demonstrations, boat trips, tours, activities and seafood cookery demonstrations

Screenplay Film Festival

Accordian and Fiddle Festival

Shetland Wool Week

Wordplay Book Festival

Christmas Craft Fair

Taste of Shetland Food Festival

Christmas and Hogmanay