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Trails and Exhibits
UNESCO Global Geopark

Trails and Exhibits

Volcanic Geoart, Stennes. Copyright Paul Harvey Volcanic Geoart, Stennes. Copyright Paul Harvey Zoom Shetland's Volcano

This self-guide trail explores the volcanic landscape of Eshaness. The Eshaness peninsula is formed from the remains of a large volcano that was active between 400 and 350 million years ago. Now one of the highest energy coastlines in the world, the sea has exploited cracks in the volcanic bedrock to carve out the dramatic array of stacks, geos and blowholes you can see today. The trails include a number of walks and site visits. They are supported by on-site interpretation at several locations.

The trail pack is available from the Shetland Museum and Archives in Lerwick or can be downloaded below.

Journey into Shetland's Volcano

Volcano Trail Volcano Trail Zoom Volcano Trail: Introduction

Volcano Trail: Useful Information

Volcano Trail: Access Information

Volcano Trail 1: Mavis Grind - in the heart of the volcano

Volcano Trail 2: Braewick beach

Volcano Trail 3: Stennes beach and Tangwick Haa Museum

Volcano Trail 4: Eshaness coast 

Geowall, Unst Heritage Centre. Copyright Rory Tallack. Geowall, Unst Heritage Centre. Copyright Rory Tallack. Zoom The Shetland Ophiolite

This self-guide trail takes you on a journey to the bottom of an ancient ocean. The Shetland ophiolite is a stranded section of ocean crust that was thrust up onto an ancient contient during a massive collision some 420 million years ago. The islands of Unst and Fetlar are formed partly from this ancient contient, and partly from oceanic crust.

The trails include a number of walks and site visits. They are supported by an exhibition and geology wall at the Unst Heritage centre as well as on-site interpretation at several locations.

The trail pack is available from the Shetland Museum and Archives in Lerwick or can be downloaded below.

Explore the Shetland ophiolite - the floor of an ancient ocean

Ophiolite Trail Ophiolite Trail Zoom Ophiolite Trail: Introduction

Ophiolite Trail: Useful Information

Ophiolite Trail: Access Information

Ophiolite Trail 1: Unst Heritage Centre

Ophiolite Trail 2: Norwick, Hermaness and the Keen of Hamar

Ophiolite Trail 3: Hagdale and the Heogs

Ophiolite Trail 4: Sobul and Watlee Burn

Ophiolite Trail 5: Ham Ness

Ophiolite Trail 6: Funzie to Staves Geo 

Geoexhibit, Braewick Cafe. Copyright Robina Barton Geoexhibit, Braewick Cafe. Copyright Robina Barton Zoom Shetland's geological jigsaw

Visitors to Braewick Cafe in Eshaness will find a 'table and chairs' with a difference. The exhibit illustrates the way that Shetland's rocks came together over nearly 3000 million years, rather like a massive geological jigsaw. Each of the 'chairs' is built from rock representing a key part of Shetland's geological formation. They surround an interpretive 'table' with a colour coded map. The map, which highlights Shetland's geological diversity, can be used to tell age of each rock and where in Shetland it can be found.

How the Inuksuit came to Yell

Exhibits at the Old Haa in Burravoe celebrate the beauty and diversity of the Rocks of Yell. A series of stone figures built in the style of Inuit 'inuksuit' can be found in the Old Haa Garden. The Inuit use inuksuit as waymarkers and aids to navigation. Each figure is built from a different type of rock.

The Inuit theme was chosen because most of Yell's rocks were formed about 900 million years ago when Yell was part of what is now North America. The island also boasts some of Shetlands oldest rocks which are about 2900 million years old. An exhibition within the museum entitled 'Yell - it's Moine and it's Gneiss' illustrates Yell's geological story. Audio commentaries about the rock types represented were written and recorded by the pupils of Burravoe school. Further museum displays highlight Yell's cultural links with North America through whaling and the Hudson’s Bay Company.

A project booklet about Yell's geology, developed with the help of the Burravoe school pupils, is available to purchase at the Old Haa. The booklet was funded by Museums and Galleries Scotland.

Mica Schist Inuksuk - Old Haa Garden. Copyright Robin Barton. Mica Schist Inuksuk - Old Haa Garden. Copyright Robin Barton. Zoom How the Inuksuit came to Yell How the Inuksuit came to Yell Zoom