COVID-19 update: Shetland is now reopen to visitors, as per Scottish government guidelines, but please read our guidance on travelling responsibly.

Brae - Sullom, Gunnister and Nibon

This route follows the A970 north-west from Brae into Northmavine; once described as ‘the largest, wildest and most beautiful parish in Shetland’, a description which still fits the area well.

Distance: 24km / 14.9 miles  (Circular route)

Download Route: • KML File • GPX File

Northmavine is part of Mainland, but only just! Not far north of Brae is Mavis Grind where a narrow isthmus joins Northmavine to the rest of Mainland. The narrow neck of land that separates the North Sea from the Atlantic is just 90 yards (80m) wide so you can indulge in one of the shortest coast to coast walks anywhere. An interpretive geology wall built by Geopark Shetland describes the stunningly diverse geology of the area while a panel tells something of the history of the area.

Travelling north on the A970 through amazing road cuttings that contrast grey gabbro rock with bright red granite, there are wonderful views over Mangaster Voe. Generally all along the route the glacially moulded landscape meeting the fierce Atlantic coastline makes for scenic cycling. Just 0.5 miles (1km) beyond Mavis Grind the route turns right towards Sullom. After a sharp climb there are great views across the Bight of Haggrister where small patches of woodland overlook a lagoon and salt marsh across to Voxter and north through the long inlet of Sullom Voe.

Turn left at the junction near Sullom and Gunnister Public Hall to cross some wild moorland with lochs before the route rejoins the A970. Turning right and immediate left takes you onto the road to Gunnister and Nibon. It is a ride of just over 2 miles (3.5km) to reach the end of this road, but it must rank as one of the most beautiful for cycling anywhere in Shetland. At Gunnister Voe the rocky scenery combines with a road which twists and turns following the contours of the hillside. The road is a roller coaster ride with blind corners which inevitably turn into another spectacular view when you round them.

At the end of the road stands the Isle of Nibon and some dramatic cliff scenery, with views to both Papa Stour and West Mainland. You can continue by walking along the shore of South Sound and cilff tops to Wilson’s Noup and Mill Geos; the cliffs here have been cut by veins of pink granite and moulded by ice to spectacular effect.

The ride back to Brae is some 7 miles (11km) taking the A970 on the more direct route. There are splendid views above Mangaster Voe on the route south.

  • Baltasound - Fetlar

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 48km
    View route
  • Baltasound - Hermaness

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 21km
    View route
  • Baltasound - Muness Castle

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 25km
    View route
  • Baltasound - Saxa Vord, Norwick and Skaw

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 25km
    View route
  • Brae - Hillswick

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 17.5km
    View route
  • Brae - Mid Yell

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 36km
    View route
  • Brae - Muckle Roe

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 16km
    View route
  • Brae - Sullom, Gunnister and Nibon

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 24km
    View route
  • Hillswick - Eshaness

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 21.5km
    View route
  • Hillswick - Heylor, North Roe and Isbister

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 42km
    View route
  • Lerwick - Brae

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 54.5km
    View route
  • Lerwick - Bressay and Noss

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 24km
    View route
  • Lerwick - Scalloway

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 9.5km
    View route
  • Lerwick - Vidlin

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 38km
    View route
  • Lerwick - Walls

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 38.5km
    View route
  • Mid Yell - Baltasound/Norwick

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 23.5km
    View route
  • Mid Yell - Fetlar

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 51.5km
    View route
  • Mid Yell - North Yell (Gutcher, Cullivoe and Gloup)

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 32km
    View route
  • Mid Yell - South Yell (West Sandwick, Ulsta and Burravoe)

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 38.5km
    View route
  • Sandwick - Lerwick

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 23km
    View route
  • Sandwick - Sandsayre, Cunningsburgh and Fladdabister

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 30km
    View route
  • Sandwick - Scalloway

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 22.5km
    View route
  • Scalloway - Brae

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 52km
    View route
  • Scalloway - Burra and Tronda

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 31.5km
    View route
  • Scalloway - Vidlin

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 35.5km
    View route
  • Scalloway - Walls

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 37km
    View route
  • Scousburgh - Sandwick

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 11km
    View route
  • Scousburgh - Ward of Scousburgh and St Ninian’s Isle

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 18km
    View route
  • Sumburgh

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 30km
    View route
  • Sumburgh - Scousburgh

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 17km
    View route
  • Vidlin - Brae

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 17.5km
    View route
  • Vidlin - Lunna Ness

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 17km
    View route
  • Vidlin - Mid Yell

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 46.5km
    View route
  • Vidlin - Whalsay

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 21.5km
    View route
  • Walls - Brae

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 38km
    View route
  • Walls - Burrastow and Watsness

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 26km
    View route
  • Walls - Clousta and Noonsbrough

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 38km
    View route
  • Walls - Culswick, Westerwick and Easter Skeld

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 48km
    View route
  • Walls - Vidlin

    Route Type Linear
    Route Distance 37km
    View route
  • Walls - West Burrafirth and Papa Stour

    Route Type Circular
    Route Distance 26.5km
    View route
Add to
My Shetland
collection
My Collection 0
Close