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Up Helly Aa alternatives?

Burlington, Vermont
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11 posts
3 reviews
1 helpful vote
Up Helly Aa alternatives?
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Hi, I was looking at going to Up Helly Aa next year and was wondering if anyone could tell me what the other Shetland fire festivals are like and if they're good for visitors? Is it better to go to the big one in Lerwick or would one of the less popular ones be just as fun and easier to book accommodation etc?

2 replies to this topic
Shetland Islands...
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978 posts
6 reviews
1 helpful vote
1. Re: Up Helly Aa alternatives?
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None of the other fire festivals are as big as Lerwick. The South Mainland Up Helly Aa (SMUHA) is the second biggest with Delting coming next. They all feature a galley, a squad of Vikings and a crowd of torch bearing guizers.

None of them is particularly geared for visitors but obviously they are made very welcome. You would need your own transport to visit the festivals in more remote areas of Shetland is public transport in the evenings is not very good.

To get the most out of any local fire festival you need to get tickets to a hall following the procession and burning. There you will be entertained by the various squads of guizers performing dances or skits. I find the local Up Helly Aas much more entertaining than Lerwick.

As the local Up Hell Aas are smaller in scale there is a lot less of a problem finding accommodation.

Burlington, Vermont
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11 posts
3 reviews
1 helpful vote
2. Re: Up Helly Aa alternatives?
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Thanks a lot, that's really helpful :)

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