The Shetland Islands may be remote, but history did not overlook them. At the excavation site of Jarlshof, brochs (tall roundhouses of stone made without mortar) date to the Iron Age and an ancient Norse longhouse tells of a Viking community. More recent history echoes through the streets of Lerwick, the islands’ sleepy capital founded by Dutch fishermen. The Main Island gets much of its beauty from its diversity. Farmland and dreamy meadows unfold toward seal-dotted beaches. Columnar sea stacks and rocky cliffs take a beating from the surf in the north. Medieval castles overlook valleys and lakes in the west, and Shetlands’ world-famous ponies can be seen grazing by the roadside or on the heathery hills. The Shetlands are, for many visitors, several destinations rolled into one splendid locale.