As far as cruise ships go, Expedition may not look at all special. Compared with some of the grand liners that have visited Lerwick Harbour in recent times, it could be fair to call her rather dowdy.
However that may be doing a disservice to the Liberian-registered ship’s Shetland connection.
Far from being a luxury liner populated by well-heeled, tanned and moneyed tourists stopping off for a quick browse on Commercial Street before being whisked off for a look at the country, Expedition can more fairly be described as an adventure cruiser, taking bird and nature lovers to remote destinations like Fair Isle and Foula.
Indeed, if anyone who thinks the ship looks vaguely familiar behind its fading colour scheme, there could be a very good reason for that – Expedition is the sister ship to the last St Sunniva, which sailed under the P&O banner before NorthLink took over the contract to link Shetland with the mainland in 2002.
In other news, the number of yachts visiting the harbour has been steadily building up in anticipation of the long summer days ahead.
Most of them have come in from Norway, although some have Ireland and the States.
Oil related activity is ticking over, although with off-shore work slowing down steadily there is still not the number of jobs there used to be.
The Norwegian reefer Silver Copenhagen came in to port at Green Head on Sunday, and returned in the middle of the week to pick up a load of frozen fish from the Catch.