35.2. Day Two in Shetland: St. Ninian’s Isle, Tombolo, Cliffs, and Treasure

Because the days are insanely long in Shetland, I had time for a complete second adventure after returning home from Scalloway! This one I drove to, as it was a good 15 miles south.

St. Ninian’s is famous for three reasons: the tombolo (swath of sand connecting mainland to island), the beautiful white sands and gentle water, and the treasure that was found at the ancient chapel site.

I’ll mostly just let the photos speak for themselves here! This was a long walk all along the coastline, with dramatic cliffs and holms (rock formations out in the water), and loads of inlets way down below. Another gorgeous day for walking, too, with perfect sky and water.

The tombolo from the mainland, facing west.
South side of the tombolo.
That sky. That fluffy cloud.
I seriously could not get enough of these cliff views. And there’s a lot of them in Shetland! But each and every one is special in its own way.
One of many resident bunnies.
The Isle of Foula in the distance. I would be there in a few days.
This little lapwing was very worried about its nest.
There is no evidence St. Ninian ever visited Shetland. But the Pictish peoples were fans, and they definitely settled here.
The rescued booty. Probably hidden from Vikings, and only luck kept it hidden all those centuries.

“The site might be one of the first places to see the arrival of Christianity in Shetland. Excavations in the 1950s and early 21st-century revealed that an even older Pictish treasure, dated around 800 CE, had been buried near the chapel. The earliest signs of human occupation on the Isle date to 1,600 years earlier during the Iron Age, around 800 BCE.” (From Atlas Obscura)

The tombolo from the isle, looking east.
North side of the tombolo.

A long and wonderful walk! The next day was booked for a tour, so I got an early dinner and good night’s sleep!

Impossible Burgers on the magnificent stove!

And Day Two is done and done.

31 May, 2022


One response to “35.2. Day Two in Shetland: St. Ninian’s Isle, Tombolo, Cliffs, and Treasure”

  1. I love seeing through your eyes. You find beauty–or perhaps it finds you–everywhere!

    Liked by 1 person

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