Unst is Britain’s most northerly island with a landscape resembling the moon is a superb place to go for a visit.
Forget John O’Groats you must see Skaw which is the most northerly house in the UK. Much has changed in the last 10 years with the closure of RAF Saxa Vord in 2006 and ½ the population left the island. If you want to buy a semi- detached house for around £40,000 then this is the place to make enquiries. While shops have closed in the north and south of the island Baltasound remains the hub of community life.
At Haroldswick in the north there is much to find, with the `Boat Haven’, which portrays the history of small boats in Shetland and a new site, the Viking longboat and longhouse. In fact Unst is one of the best places in Europe for archaeology with the nearby Crussa Field hold around 4,000 individual sites.
Just a bit further north is the Foords chocolate shop a must if you are in the area, the deluxe chocolate experience recommended.
Lets not forget the Unst bus shelter, near Baltasound. It even has its own website at www.unstbusshelter.com anywhere else it would have been destroyed but here people respect things. The decoration changes each year.
Unst also has at least 11 broch sites and 2 large standing stones, Bordastubble being the largest, while on the south west coast the Lund standing stone is impressive. On the other side at Muness is a castle which was built in 1598 and is only one of two castles in Shetland, the other at Scalloway.
Down at Baltasound Buness House, built in 1460 has had some great visitors including Burke and Hare; I wonder whether they went away with any souvenirs. Sir Peter Scott was also stationed here as a commando in WW2.
You need more than a day to explore the areas and even though we have been going back every time since we first visited back in 1987 it always reveals something new. At least now we have settled in Shetland we can keep going back at different times of year to see what’s around.