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Reviews of Lerwick Up Helly Aa, Lerwick

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Review by elisabeth jones on 1st January, 2010

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The Lerwick Up Helly Aa is a viking-inspired event. There is a procession by men only around 6 pm followed by burning of the galley. this event is public and lasts about one hour. after that,the groups of men tour all the school and community halls during the whole night in front of an invited audience. these halls are private and you can only attend these if you have been invited by one of the lady organisers. i was not invited and could therefore not join in these all night events. it seems that the groups of men perform little acts; then there is dancing and a lot of drinking. not being local, i felt the whole up helly aa event passed me by. it is really intended for the members of these up helly aa groups and their wives and girl friends. in my opinion it is not worth travelling to shetland for up helly aa, because you can only join in this small part namely the procession. the rest is private and closed to outsiders.

Date visited: january 2009

Review by Ron Stronach

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Lerwick up Helly aa is the best event in the Shetland Isles, its worth putting up with the cold just to see it. Dont forget to make sure you buy tickets for one of the many halls open during the festival, and be prepared for a very late night, or even a late morning. An event you need to see "Live", not a scene from the telly

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