|🕛 28 Jan 2020||🗀 Traditional Festival|
Up Helly Aa is an annual fire festival which takes place in Lerwick, Scotland – usually on the last Tuesday in January. It involves a variety of visitations and marches, culminating in a torch-lit procession and the burning of a huge galley.
Up Helly Aa 2020
The following Wednesday is a public holiday in Lerwick to allow for recovery.
It runs completely by volunteers and lasts only a day, but it takes several thousand people and a whole year to organize properly.
The biggest secret of the Up Helly Aa is what the ‘Guizer Jarl’ will wear and which character from the Norse Sagas he will represent each year.
Up Helly Aa Procession
On the evening of Up Helly Aa day, close to 1000 heavily-disguised man, in groups called “squads” appear in the streets of the city. Only the Jarl Squad should wear Viking costumes, the rest ranges from the almost sublime to absolutely fun and ridiculous.
During this period, the town is in darkness and the streetlights are switched off.
Video: Lerwick Fire Festival 2019