How many people stay on Fetlar?
There are currently just over 69 people permanently residing on Fetlar.
How do I get there?
From within Shetland, you can get to Fetlar by car or bus and ferry. From outside Shetland please see our transport page.
Is it expensive to get to Fetlar?
It is not an especially cheap holiday option, but by watching for special offers the costs can be reasonable. Peak season is usually busy and offers are usually very limited.
Are there any places to stay?
Yes, there is a Guest House at Gord, and self-catering cottages Bethany and Tresta Croft House, The Lodge and Peerie House. There is also a Camping Bod at Aith.
Are there any places to eat?
The Guest House serves meals for non-residents by prior arrangement. There is a Cafe at the shop which normally runs during shop hours, see this link for the latest details and opening times. It serves homemade soup, hot and cold rolls and home bakes with hot and cold drinks. Please contact them to check on the latest opening hours. Fetlar Interpretive Centre is open May-September inclusive 7 days a week and offers hot drinks and snacks such as biscuits and confectionery.
What about toilets?
There are public toilets available at the ferry terminal at Hamars Ness year round. The Fetlar Interpretive Centre and Fetlar shop & cafe both have toilet facilities available during opening hours.
What medical facilities are there?
When visiting the island please be aware that there is no doctor on the island. There is a highly trained district nurse, but backup does have to come from outside.
What’s the weather like?
The weather in Shetland can be very changeable. In general, it is cooler in Summer than mainland UK but in winter tends to be milder without the extremes in temperature. Winds can be very strong, especially during the winter months.
When and where can I see the red-necked phalaropes?
The best times to see them are from late May/early June through until early July. They may well be around outside of these times but there may be fewer birds around. The best place to see them is generally around the loch of Funzie or from the RSPB hide. Please be aware that if the weather is not good they are often difficult to find. Companies such as Shetland Nature or Shetland Wildlife can provide guides who can help greatly improve your chances of seeing them.
Is there a pub?
There is no pub, but the Hall bar is open every Saturday night and many people gather there for a few drinks and sometimes some music. The shop has an off licence and sells wine, beer and spirits.
Is there a mobile signal?
Vodaphone, O2 and EE provide fast 4G where there is a signal but there are some parts of the island where there is no signal
Is there wireless access anywhere?
Yes, there is wireless access at Hamars Ness ferry terminal and all other SIC ferry terminals throughout Shetland; the network is called SICguest. Free wireless access is also available at Fetlar Hall, Fetlar Cafe and Fetlar Interpretive Centre
What events are on in Fetlar?
There are several regular events on in Fetlar each year as well as occasional ones. For the latest information see the Events page.
Do you speak Gaelic?
No, Shetland has never had a Gaelic culture. Its influences come from Scandinavia. Many Shetland Dialect words have direct Scandinavian equivalents.
Especially noticeable are the Shetland names for birds, many of which are used regularly, e.g. a Bonxie is a Great Skua.
How can I comment on my visit?
Please feel free to use the contact form on the website to provide us with any feedback or to ask any questions.
Is there fuel available on the island?
Neither petrol nor diesel is available so please make sure you top up before arriving. There is an EV fast charge point at Fetlar Interpretive Centre.
Can we drink the water?
Yes, in common with the rest of the UK mains supply water is safe to drink. Please note however that the toilets at the ferry terminal are not on the mains supply and the water there is not drinking water.
Is there a school?
Yes, Fetlar has a primary school which also offers nursery education. This is currently mothballed. For secondary education, pupils either have to travel daily off the island to attend Baltasound Junior High School on Unst or can weekly board at the Anderson High School in Lerwick. There is no charge for pupils boarding.