The Barracks is a 1970's unique build with a strong earthy feel. A commanding site with wide panoramic view of the entrance to Inishbofin Harbour, the Barracks is a cosy location to relax and watch sails and storms arrive and pass on.
The Barracks has the feel of a Shaker house. It allows for basic, stripped down living. The island lifestyle is accentuated by the large south facing pane glass front (in the living room) which allows the house to heat up beautifully even in the sunshine.
The lounge area with the solid fuel stove is a comfy corner which can be curtained off from the living room. There is plenty of great reading material which is there to help pass those quiet hours on the island.
The kitchen is quite basic but very well laid out. It has the feel of a boats galley adding to the cottages nautical theme. There are two sinks and a fine gas stove for cooking.
The first bedroom is the double downstairs. It is bright and fresh with magnificent views over the entrance to the harbour.
Upstairs we have another nice double which has a warmer, nautical feel.
Downstairs the lounge ares has a crafty roll-out bed which provides the most unique sleeping experience in the Barracks. With the stove lit and the blankets over you there are few nooks as sheltered on the island.
The two bathrooms are small but well thought out. Hot water is never an issue.
Inishbofin is a Special Area of Conservation (due to the presence of corn crakes and seals).
Today, tourism is the island's main industry. There are three hotels and a hostel on the island. Inishbofin offers scuba diving, walking trails, cycling, horse riding, sailing, paddle boarding, kayaking, snorkelling, shore and sea angling.
The island's population has shrunk dramatically since pre-famine times. By 1881, the number was down to 959. In 1990, there were around 200 inhabitants, the 2011 Census found just 160 inhabitants.
The island's English name Inishbofin is derived from the Irish name Inis Bó Finne ('Island of the White Cow'). There are several legends concerning the origins of the island's name. According to one legend, the island was actually a floating place until some fishermen landed on it in a fog. By bringing fire onto the island, they dispelled the magic, fixing it in place. They then saw an old woman driving a white cow, which turned into a rock when the woman struck it with a stick.