Cycle Shapinsay

Cycle Routes

Shapinsay an island 25 minutes ferry ride from Kirkwall. The perfect place for a days cycling, offering something for everyone. Leave the car in Kirkwall, catch the Shapinsay Ferry where bikes are free to take across, and have a great day out.

Shapinsay offers safe, quiet roads and tracks being mostly flat and easy going, the highest point being only 64m above sea level.

It makes a great day out for both a family or the more experienced cyclist who wants to see all that Shapinsay can offer.


There are a multitude of things to see and do. Wildlife here is varied, depending on weather, tides and time of year. Seals are resident as are the more elusive otters, birds of prey such as the Hen Harrier can often be seen, along with many types of wildfowl, wading and sea birds.

For the historian amongst you there are pre history standing stones through to Iron Age brochs and 19th century land improvements. More recently there are some World War II gun emplacements and look out posts all still standing, which can be explored with care.

There quiet bays to find and explore, sandy beaches to play on and rock pools to investigate whether you’re 7 or 70.

Of course there are many tracks to explore on Shapinsay. Please feel welcome to try them, but remember the country code wherever you wander and respect peoples property when out cycling.

We have create three suggested routes throughout Shapinsay of varying size and difficulty. Click on the images below to discover each of the different routes.

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