August 09, 2021

Inishbofin Island, Cleggan, County Galway

Inishbofin or Inis Bo Finne (Island of the White Cow) in the Irish language, is a small island that lies seven miles off Galway’s coast. 

It is estimated that Inishbofin, which stretches 5.7km by 4km, was inhabited as far back as 8000–4000 B.C. Today the main activities on the island are tourism, farming and fishing. There are five townlands, West Quarter, Fawnmore, Middle Quarter, Cloonamore and Knock.

Several award-winning sandy beaches strewn with shells and with crystal clear water make swimming, snorkelling and diving a joy. For the more adventurous, the island waters make for spectacular diving.

Inishbofin is a special area of conservation and a special area of protection. The island is a breeding area for many species of birds. The rarest or most threatened species breeding on the island at present are the Corncrake. The Corncrake have been nesting and breeding on Inishbofin for many years.

For the adventurous, there are exciting mountain walks, hill climbing and excellent shore angling. Inishbofin has become an important centre for traditional Irish music and song with its own Ceilí band. Inishbofin plays host to many visiting musicians and artists.

As you sail around the tower and signal light into the harbour you will notice Cromwell’s 16th Century Barracks. It was used as a prison for catholic priests from all over the country after the English Statute of 1585 declared them guilty of high treason.

Find out more about Inishbofin here.