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The Saxa Vord Year

Loch of Cliff in the snowUnst’s northerly location gives the island strong seasonal variation and whatever time you come you will be sure of a fascinating, exhilarating and fulfilling experience.

The Saxa Vord year starts in April when the whole island wakes up after the long winter break. Seabirds start to return to their cliff colonies, plants start to grow, crofters start the lambing and all is hustle and bustle. The period from April to July is the driest time of the year and it is also the time of the longest daylight hours. Indeed it never gets properly dark at all at midsummer – the “Simmer Dim” – a time off magic when the sun only dips below the horizon for a few minutes.   

The UnstFest which takes place in July each year is the most northerly Festival in the UK and is a fantastic event and well worth scheduling your stay to take part www.unstfest.org

June and July usually sees the Viking Unst team of archaeologists undertaking the new seasons work on a number of fascinating island sites. Visitors are always welcome to see what they are up to.

Shetland ponies at BurrafirthJune, July and August are naturally the hottest months – but heat is relative and on Unst you will find that the temperature is perfect for exploring, walking, cycling, fishing… anything outdoors. 

September and October is a time for migrating birds and for long walks in the wonderful scenery as the seasons gradually slip towards winter.

Just as summers on Unst are lighter than in the south, so winters are darker and this is the perfect time to see the “Heavenly Dancers”, the aurora borealis or Northern Lights. Winters are also a time for windy walks along magnificent beaches or headlands, admiring the spectacular seas, before returning to the warmth and comfort of Saxa Vord for refreshments and conversation. They are also a time for music, dance and festivals like the wonderful Up Helly Aa, two of which take place on Unst, one at Uyeasound and the other at Norwick. 
See Events In Unst for more information.