Around 500 visiting yachts a year call at Lerwick, with many of the crews from the UK, Scandinavia, the Continent and further a-field exploring Shetland's 1,700 miles of spectacular coastline.
Lerwick is a great place to meet-and-compete for entrants in annual international events – the long established Bergen-Shetland Races, starting in Norway, and the more recently-introduced Triangle North Sea Challenge or 1000-mile Doublehanded Race from The Netherlands.
The Port Authority’s investment in recent years has included expanded berthing and improved access, safety and services for yachts which berth mainly in the town centre where pontoons give access at all stages of the tide. Larger yachts use the harbour wall, and there are no restrictions on size of craft.
Electricity connections, fresh water and refuse disposal are available. Services also include wi-fi access, fuel at a dedicated berth, boatyard repairs, slipway, chandlery, electronics and sail repair.
Preparing for your visit
Good forward planning will ensure that your visit goes as smoothly as possible. Please take a moment to read our Guide for Visiting Yachts in conjuction with the sections below relating to Covid safety and Brexit changes.
It is still possible to go boating as a form of exercise, following the outdoor gathering rules, however the overriding message for Scotland’s boating community is to ‘Stay at Home’ wherever possible. The RYA have collated guidance for the return to boating which covers the essentials of the current restrictions as they affect Local Authority areas in Level 3 and those within Temporary Lockdown.
For visitors and international arrivals, new quarantine and Covid control measures have been introduced in Scotland, please refer to our Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Information and Updates page for more detailed information.
Arriving in the UK
All Pleasure Craft arriving from outside the UK must report to Border Force prior to arrival.
- EU/EEA Travellers must contact the local Border Force Officer for the relevant arrival location in order to be granted permission to enter the UK (see poster below for contact details).
- Visiting yacht crews are requested to read the latest Goverment guidance for sailing your pleasure craft to the UK.
- If you have any items to declare on your pleasure craft on either leaving or arriving in the UK, please complete Form C1331 and arrange to return this to the local Border Force Officer.
- Skippers are advised to contact Port Control prior to arrival to establish current status of local facilities, by telephone to +44 (0) 1595 69 2991 or by email.
Exploring the local area and beyond
Shetland Marinas - Information about sailing in Shetland waters, facilities available and useful local contacts.
Sail Scotland Brochure - A guide to sailing destinations in Scotland and the Northern Isles, with information on facilities and services available for water sports, cruisers and boat owners.
Welcome Anchorages Brochure - A guide for shore facilities, mooring and berthing at 125 locations around Scotland and the Northern Isles.