Nordo-Celtic knot symbolizing the Drakkar longships paired with the central Icelandic Vegvisir ("sign post"), which is a type of late medieval bind-rune that was a magic sigil to prevent the bearer from getting "lost in the storm". The Vegvisir is often erroneously identified as a Viking-age rune.
The great sea expeditions of the Viking Age - The basis of the great sea expeditions undertaken by the Vikings was ship technology. The Viking ship was a piece of high technology based upon hundreds of years of development and experience. It was distinguished by its narrow keel and shallow draught. This made even the largest ocean-going warships suitable for sailing onto beaches and up rivers. Such tactics enabled, for example, the siege of Paris to be carried out in the year 885.
Up Helly Aa is Shetland's famous fire festival, celebrating the Islands Norse Heritage, on the last Tuesday of January. A Viking longboat is built and set alight in the centre of Lerwick before a night of festivities begin!