Join us Marie & Brian aboard The Noss Boat 'Seabird' your highly experienced & knowledgable crew for the highlight of your holiday in Shetland with our hugely popular 4-Star boat tours around Bressay & Noss. Seabirds-and-Seals is a well-established multi award-winning business, founded in 1992 by Naturalist Dr Jonathan Wills, making it the Original & Longest Established Noss Boat Tour Business. Brian has been actively involved with Seabirds-and-Seals since it started up in 1992 by Dr Jonathan Wills. In 2017 we bought the business from Jonathan whilst he was still trading as seabirds-and-seals - kept on the same relief crew with one new addition and continued the good work that Jonathan had been doing for years.
Live commentary provided throughout the tour with our high quality PA system and can be heard both out on deck and through speakers inside the cabin. This amazing wildlife spectacular allows you to enjoy Shetland's plethora of seabirds and seals PLUS teeming sealife below with our ROV mini submarine - giving you the full experience of our widlife above & sealife below (3hr trips only). You will experience the most fabulous views, giving you fantastic opportunities to see and photograph Shetland's wildlife against the stunning backdrop of the Noss cliffs. You will get unbelievably close to the awe-inspiring sights and sounds of this extraordinary seabird metropolis, which is home to 25,000 Northern gannets, as well as thousands of other seabirds on the towering cliffs of Noss National Nature Reserve(180m high). The team bring along fresh fish to give you a guaranteed opportunity to see gannets diving. Along the way we will regale you with local history/folk-tales and share our great knowledge of Lerwick's beautiful harbour, Bressay Lighthouse, the Orkneyman's Cave, the giant's leg, the geology of Bressay, local history and much more. When sea conditions allows we take you right into the Orkneyman's Cave and we sail through the magnificent giant's leg. We stop off in a tranquil little bay for refreshments (toilet on-board) and whilst moored - there are plenty of opportunities for wildlife watching. If you're lucky you might even see porpoises, or the occassional whale, otter or dolphins - keep your fingers crossed and your eyes open. Every trip is unique and you will depart with many happy memories of Shetland.
We are a Natural Shetland born and bred couple, our experience/knowledge of the sea, nature and the local heritage around us is extensive and – to our passengers’ delight – highly entertaining. Our fun, personal and engaging style appeals to all ages and varying interest. Always minimum two crew in the interest of safety, passenger comfort & welfare, as well as to provide you with a richer experience and to to ensure you are having a fabulous experience. A new series of TripAdvisor and Google reviews, started after our busy first season in 2018, those were extremely positive and show how popular our fascinating nature tour still is, after all these years! After just one full season we were awarded the Scottish Tourist Board’s 4-Star distinction and TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence. Our tours consistently generate great reviews, leading to TripAdvisor’s Travellers' Choice award in 2020 and again in 2021. In 2021 we received another award for the trophy cabinet and this one from SME Scottish Enterprise Awards - 'Best Wildlife Boat Tour Company - Northern Isles. We are delighted to be keeping up the many awards Seabirds-and-Seals has historically received.
Seabird is a 13.5m twin engine catamaran (both 370 horsepower) - a very stable boat being twin-hulled. It has an extremely spacious viewing platform, as shown on homepage video. This allows you to enjoy fabulous 360° panoramic viewing in complete comfort, ideal for the best photographic opportunities. We are licensed to take up to 12 passengers with lifejackets made available before embarkation for all ages. There is ample room on deck for al 12 passengers to sit, stand or move around freely, without being confined to a seat or one space. You are always sheltered - there is a fixed partial canopy covering in the outside seating area, leaving the rest of our viewing platform free for viewing & photography. Alternatively you could choose to shelter inside our heated cabin, which has further seating for all 12 passengers. There are viewing windows to give you further 360° panoramic viewing. There is also a table where you can chat or access our expertly curated library. Seabird offers an ideal solution whether you are heading out on a tour as an independent traveller, with your family and friends, or looking to organise a bespoke experience for a tour group or a professional film crew
We operate April to October with two daily tours 9:30am & 12:30pm. Our 9:30am tour is 2-hours minimum and our 12:30pm tour is 3-hours minimum. Both tours cover the same route with refreshments included at our regular stop, but the 3-hour tour spends just slightly longer time at some locations and includes underwater viewing. Our tours are extremely popular so we do advise booking in advance and not leaving until your last day in Shetland as we do sometimes have to cancel due to the weather.
Seabirds-and-Seals offers you the ultimate wildlife experience with our daily 2-hour (minimum) trips around Bressay & Noss National Nature Reserve.
Seabirds-and-Seals offers you the ultimate wildlife experience with our daily 3-hour (minimum) trips around Bressay & Noss National Nature Reserve - which includes underwater viewing.
With our experienced Captain, Brian, and knowledgeable naturalist Marie, enjoyed breathtaking views of the Noss cliffs, seabird colonies, the coastline, and seals with the bonus of learning some local history and snagging some very special underwater views. On a cool and windy day on the water, the coffee/tea and biscuits served were a nice touch as well. Can't imagine a better way to see the area and wildlife - or better folks to guide us. The boat was comfortable and provided some protection from the elements as well!!
So I was visiting my friends in Lerwick and I had a few hours to spend so inspotted the seabird and seals boat, I approached Brian (owner) and asked if there was room for 1 more and there was. I was told to be at the pier for 2pm, I was and we set sail around 2.15pm, we had a safety brief from Marie and it was very clear but also relaxed. First stop was out to a shipwreck where they anchored and put down an underwater camera so we could see the sea life and the wreck, it was really amazing and you could all see clearly on the two television screens. We then proceeded to see the seals then out towards Noss, I don't want to spoil the trip for anyone but it was fantastic and the best £45 I have spent in a while, included were tea & biscuits as well, we were away from 3 and half hours, great company, great boat and overall fantastic experience, well done to you both.
We were so, so lucky...We started slowly with a fascinating camera exploring the sea life around an old wreck. Then we got serious, out into open water and the spectacularly rugged coasts of the islands of Bressay and Noss...The cliffs of Noss were one of the greatest natural sights I've ever experienced. With the sea hammering us and the captain keeping us steady maybe four feet from the rocks, we were at the base of 592-feet-high cliffs, with 25,000 birds above us, sitting/nesting on every speck of ledge, many diving beak-first at high speed to spear fish, the noise of the birds overwhelming. At one point I wondered what would happen if one bird noticed us and mused, "Fancy a change from fish today?" We were probably there half an hour, and it's a half hour that will live in our memories a long time. Lots still to see after that, including backing up into a cavern in a cliff, and anchoring in a cove for tea, coffee, and biscuits. What an incredible tour!
This tour was arranged by our cruise ship and it's a must do for anyone visiting Lerwick in Shetland Islands. We saw such beautiful birds and the two owners were so knowledgeable and friendly. Also rock formations and caves were beautiful. Loved the gingerbread cookies and coffee. Also the views from underwater camera were great!
A belated review from a visit to Shetland in May this year - we had an amazing trip with Brian and Marie round the cliffs of Noss and Bressay. They were both extremely knowledgeable and friendly, seemed to know everything about the wildlife we encountered on the tour, plenty of new things to discover even for someone who grew up in Shetland. we saw grey seals, gannets, great skuas and shags, we couldn't believe how many birds were nesting around the cliffs! The weather was nice enough for Brian to bring the boat right into the Orkneyman's Cave, as well as sending down the ROV to a small wreck at the North mooth of the harbour. would definitely consider taking the trip again, and recommend to both visitors and islanders alike.