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The chambered cairn on Ronas Hill
Location: 60.5 -1.4

Northmavine is a peninsula and parish forming the northernmost part of the Mainland of Shetland.[1] Its name is from the Old Norse Norðan Mæfeið, meaning ‘the land north of the Mavis Grind’.


The peninsula includes the northernmost part of Mainland. The parish spells its name Northmaven, and this comprises a number of adjacent islands. The parish extends sixteen miles by eight miles.

The villages of the parish are Hillswick, Ollaberry, and North Roe.[2]

An isthmus, Mavis Grind (Old Norse: Mæfeiðs grind), about a hundred yards across, forms the sole connection with the rest of Mainland. The coast is indented by numerous bays and consists largely of high, steep rocks. It has a number of high, fissured, cavernous cliffs on the west coast and consists of many skerries, islets, and offshore rocks. The interior has a very small amount of arable land; it consists mostly of rough, rising ground, including Ronas Hill, the highest point in all Shetland.[3]

Esha Ness Lighthouse stands on the Northmavine peninsula.[4]

Tangwick Haa Museum preserves the history of Northmavine. Remains of ancient watch houses and remains of barrows and forts are also numerous. [5]

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Northmavine)


  1. Northmavine (Shetland Heritage)
  2. Northmavine (Undiscovered Scotland)
  3. About Northmavine –
  4. Eshaness – The Northern Lighthouse Board
  5. Tangwick Haa Museum (Undiscovered Scotland)
  • Wilson, Rev. John The Gazetteer of Scotland (Edinburgh, 1882)
  • Guy, Peter (2006) Northmavine (Walking the Coastline of Shetland) (Shetland Times Ltd) ISBN 978-1904746171