We (Brian and Marie) took over running the Seabirds and Seals boat trips in 2017, after founder Dr Jonathan Wills retired. We are both born Shetlander's and have thoroughly enjoyed all the tours we've taken so far and cannot wait to welcome all passengers onboard our Catamaran 'Seabird' to join us on a voyage around part of Shetland's fantastic coastline.
Although this is the first boat trip business we have owned, we are no strangers to being on the water. We both have extensive seafaring experience, which led to us sailing our own 52ft yacht 'Enjah' from Shetland to part of the Meditteranean where we explored for over two years. A truly magnificent experience for us both but we're glad to be home, showcasing what Shetland has to offer to our many visitors and meeting people from all over is absolutely fantastic.
Brian has MCA Boatmaster's License, along with his VHF Radio Operator's License. He also has qualification in Professional Practices & Responsibilities. We both have Basic Sea Survival Training and just recenlty been renewed. We both have First Aid At Sea qualification - so with all that you are in very safe hands for a fun filled trip with a fun loving couple.
During the Winter months, we are involved with assisting Scottish Natural Heritage with the seal counts and SOTEAG with the bird counts and most recently with RSPB. Well I say we, mostly Brian involved with the Winter counts as Marie is busy with her relief posts in Social Care Work in a care home and also as Learing Support Worker for children with additional support needs in the Shetland Schools.
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.