A 757-acre Scottish island that comes with a mansion and a whale skeleton nicknamed ‘Bony Dick’ is on sale for just over $2 million

A 757-acre Scottish island that comes with a mansion and a whale skeleton nicknamed 'Bony Dick' is on sale for just over $2 million


The Isle of Vaila is a 757-are island in Shetland.Savills

  • A Scottish island with its own 17th-century mansion is on sale for just over $2 million.

  • The Isle of Vaila has been owned by the same couple for 30 years, who told Insider it’s “heaven.”

  • Since 2000 it’s been home to a sperm whale skeleton, nicknamed “Bony Dick” as a nod to “Moby Dick.”

An island roughly 100 miles from mainland Scotland is on sale for £1.75 million, or around $2 million.

Isle of Vaila.

The Isle of Vaila.Savills

Source: Savills

The Isle of Vaila, a 757-acre landmass that’s part of the Shetland Archipelago, is home to rugged cliffs, rocky outcrops, caves, and pebble beaches, according to the Savills real-estate listing.

Isle of Vaila is one of the Shetland Islands, roughly 100 miles off the coast of Scotland.

The Isle of Vaila is one of the Shetland Islands, roughly 100 miles off the coast of Scotland.Google Maps, Savills

Source: Savills

Current owner Richard Rowland told Insider via email that he and his partner had “30 fantastic years” there, but “it is time for others to follow their dream” on the island.

Isle of Vaila.

The Isle of Vaila.Savills

As well as the island, which is a 10-minute boat ride from mainland Shetland, whoever buys Vaila will also own various properties dotted around it, including an 18th-century watchtower.

There are a number of buildings on the island.

There are a number of buildings on the island.Savills

Source: Savills

But by far the grandest building on the island is Vaila Hall, a 17th-century mansion designed to look very similar to a castle with turrets and coats of arms carved into the walls.

Isle of Vaila.

The castle-like mansion.Savills

Source: Savills

Vaila Hall was carefully renovated by the current owners to suit modern living with features such as new generators, central heating, electricity, and water filtration.

Isle of Vaila.

The Isle of Vaila.Savills

Source: Savills

Stone steps lead up to the impressive-looking wooden front door, which in turn opens up into what is known as the Great Hall.

Stone steps lead up to the wooden doorway of the mansion.

Stone steps lead up to the wooden doorway of the mansion.Savills

According to Rowland, they’ve tried to conserve the feeling of a “time warp,” and the stone fireplace and the original 1800s furniture in the Great Hall certainly do make it appear frozen in time.

The mansion interior.

The Great Hall is described as the “heart of the house” in the listing.Savills

In total, the mansion comes with six bedrooms, four of which are located on the first floor and have incredible ocean views, according to the listing.

Vaila Hall.

Vaila Hall.Savills

Adding to the mystique of the entire mansion, the study room comes with a secret entrance, the listing adds.

The study also has a secret entrance, adding to the mystique of the property.

The study.Savills

It wouldn’t hurt if the new owner had green fingers because there are three walled gardens, some of which are home to sycamore trees over a hundred years old.

Isle of Vaila.

The island is home to plenty of green spaces.Savills

Vaila’s a rich organic farming opportunity for newcomers, who should also know that there is a flock of 200 pure-bred Shetland ewes on the island.

Isle of Vaila.

The Isle of Vaila.Savills

Source: Savills

In terms of wildlife, the listing says pods of orca often play in the surrounding waters, a real plus for anyone who fancies a bit of sea-life spotting from the comfort of home.

Pods of orca are often spotted playing in the waters surrounding the Isle of Vaila.

Pods of orca are often spotted playing in the waters surrounding the Isle of Vaila.Savills, Danita Delimont/Getty Images

Speaking of marine life, the island has been home to a 42-foot sperm whale skeleton since it washed up in 2000. According to Rowland, its nickname is “Bony Dick,” as a nod to “Moby Dick.”

“Bony Dick” is the nickname of the whale skeleton.Rick Noel

Source: Savills

The current owners have spent a lot of time to themselves on the island, but according to Rowland’s wife Dorota, they’ve never had an unsettling moment. “You just have to have the right frame of mind,” she said.

Isle of Vaila.

The Isle of Vaila.Savills

Though if there’s ever a precarious moment, emergency services can land Coastguard helicopters on Vaila, a Savills representative told Insider.

Isle of Vaila.

The Isle of Vaila.Savills

For the current owners, whose happy island memories include a family wedding, dances, live music, and sporting events, Vaila “is heaven.”

Isle of Vaila.

The Isle of Vaila at sunset.Savills

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