to Shetland Museum and Archives

Our Five Star, award winning Museum and Archives is a multifunctional visitor attraction in the heart of Shetland's capital town of Lerwick. Begin your journey through the history of our beautiful islands here, with an enjoyable and interactive visitor experience discovering our world renowned collections.

Visit Us

A warm welcome awaits you at Shetland Museum and Archives. Join us for a journey through Shetland’s past with our informative displays and interactive exhibits. Relax in Hay's Dock Cafe Restaurant and pick up a souvenir of your visit from the Gift Shop.


Visitors and researchers can explore the fascinating story of Shetland’s heritage and culture in one place, with access to a wealth of documents and artefacts covering all aspects of the islands' past at Shetland Museum and Archives.

Education & Research

Shetland Museum and Archives offers a comprehensive education programme, with access to workshops focussing on different areas of our collections, and outreach sessions in the community.

Online Resources

Access document and photo archives online, or download a choice of teaching resources, or visitor activitity sheets.

Community Heritage

Shetland’s heritage is researched, collected and exhibited throughout the islands by a network of local museums and heritage centres. Each museum and heritage centre in Shetland is unique, highlighting the various and changing aspects of natural and cultural heritage in each area.

Venue & Event Hire

Shetland Museum and Archives offers first class venue facilities for hire in a stunning dockside location. From conferences and meetings, to weddings or birthday parties, our versatile spaces are suitable for any event.

Opening Times

Monday to Saturday: 10.00am to 5.00pm
Sunday: 12.00pm to 5.00pm
Monday to Friday: 10.00am to 4.30pm
Saturday and Sunday: Closed
Hay’s Dock Café Restaurant
Monday: 10.00am to 5.00pm
Tuesday to Saturday: 10.00am to 9.00pm (last orders)
Sunday: 12.00pm to 5.00pm
Crofthouse Museum
1st May to 30th September, Daily: 10.00am to 1.00pm and 2.00pm to 4.00pm

Photo Archive

Scotland's most extensive photo archive

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Gift Shop

Unique gifts and souvenirs with a heritage theme

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Explore the Archives and Museum Artefacts

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Hay's Dock Café Restaurant

Fresh local fayre with stunning dockside views

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Events and activities during your visit

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Events and activities during your visit

Shetland Museum and Archives are proud to offer a range of events for adults, children and famlies, covering a variety of themes throughout the year.Our own events are detailed below, or see the 'What's On' Calendar for all public events and exhibition listings for the building.

Spectacular Sea Creatures P1-3
03/07/2017 - 10/07/2017

Bairns workshop for P1-3. Come along to find out about some of the amazing sea life that is around our shores.

Spectacular Sea Creatures P4-7
2:00pm - 3:00pm

Bairns workshop for P4-7 as part of Shetland Nature Festival.

Wonderful Wildflowers
10:30am - 12:30pm

Nature inspired event for bairns in P4-7 as part of Shetland Nature Festival.

Pictish Wall Hangings P1-3
10:30am - 11:30am

Clay crafts for bairns aged P1-3



Displays, Exhibitions and Gadderie Shows

There are a number of exhibition spaces and feature display areas throughout the Museum and Archives building. The artefacts and works on display change regularly and details of our current shows are listed here.


Paul Bloomer - A Prayer for the Healing of the Nations
03/06/2017 - 14/07/2017

This collection of artwork explores the tensions, fault lines and connections that exist between seemingly opposing forces in a world that is held in a state of perpetual antitheses.

Alex Boak - People who touch wool
02/09/2017 - 01/10/2017

A display of images relating to the Shetland wool industry.

Janette Kerr and Jo Millett - Confusing Shadow with Substance
22/07/2017 - 27/08/2017

Shetland's fishing stations: re-imagined events and journeys from shoreline to the far haaf.

Celebrating 100 years of the SWRI
07/10/2017 - 19/11/2017

Learn more about the work of the SWRI


Latest News

Keep up to date with new stories and details of what our staff are doing to preserve and promote Shetland's heritage and culture .

10th Birthday Celebrations

To celebrate the milestone 10th birthday, Shetland Museum and Archives staff are hosting a day of birthday celebrations on Saturday 3rd June and would like to invite everyone along to join in the activities planned for the day.

Mathewson Lecture

Eileen Brooke-Freeman will deliver a talk about the life of her ancestor Andrew Dishington Mathewson of East Yell (1799-1887) from her research into his letters, plans and other documents deposited in the Shetland Archives.

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