The Ness Boating Club Marina, at the Pool of Virkie, has one visitor berth. The area is handy while waiting for the wind and tide to round Sumburgh Head and Fitful Head, or to make the Fair Isle crossing. The entrance to the marina is narrow and shallow, so it is advisable to take local advice before entering.
Yachts with more than 1m draft will find that the nearby Voe of Grutness provides a good anchorage and a pier, where toilets and fresh water are available. However, the Fair Isle ferry has priority, so vessels using the pier should not be left unattended.
Just 15 minutes' walk away are two amazing archaeological sites: Old Scatness and Jarlshof. Excavations at Old Scatness have revealed one of Britain's most exciting Iron Age villages, with many buildings standing to at or near roof height and some even 'decorated' with yellow clay! During July and August each year, interpretation is provided in the visitor centre and by guides. ‘Living history’ demonstrations of ancient crafts and skills illustrate how our ancestors lived.
Sumburgh Head offers a good opportunity for spotting minke and killer whales (orcas). More commonly, you may see harbour porpoises feeding in the swirling tides around the tip of the south mainland. Around the lighthouse, from April until around the end of July, you’ll also find the UK's most accessible colony of comical-looking puffins. The cliffs are also home to guillemots, kittiwakes and shags, as well as seals, which haul out on the rocks below. There is an excellent visitor centre at the lighthouse, in which you can learn more about all these species and the lighthouse itself.