A short jump from Inis Mor, this interesting island is the most traditional of the group - very few cars, wonderful walks, and some people still wearing traditional clothes; by contrast the Inis Meain Knitting Co. factory and showroom offers great bargains on unique products only to be found in specialist outlets in Milan and Japan.
At the foot of Dun Conchubhar (Connor’s Fort) is Teresa and Padraic Faherty’s restaurant and B&B, An Dún, which was the home of Padraig’s grandfather and was the first restaurant on the island when it opened in 1989.
In 2000 it was refurbished and extended to include en-suite bedrooms (modern, well fitted out, comfortable, great views), a new dining room and a mini-spa; Teresa is qualified in aromatherapy and can arrange packages for the new spa, especially off-season.
More recently a neat garden has been added along the side of the house, which is almost next door to Synge’s cottage, and their small shop has become a café/snack bar where seafood chowder, leek & potato soup, Aran smoked salmon and soda bread feature; this leads on to a deck in front, which adds to the atmosphere of leisure.
The island’s pretty traditional pub is just five minutes’ walk.
Mini-spa (sauna, steam shower, massage); aromatherapy. Shop. Children welcome (under 3s free in parents' room, cot available without charge). No Pets. Garden. Walking, cycling.
Rooms 5 (all en-suite, shower only and no smoking; 2 ground floor). B&B €45 (€35 low season), ss €5-15 (advance booking only in winter).
There are two dining rooms - the inner one is original and cottagey, while a modern extension has wooden floors and windows on two sides, with wonderful sea and mountain views. The style and atmosphere is homely and everything Teresa serves is made on the premises - some of the best traditional food on the islands is to be found here.
Local foods star: fish straight from currachs; their own floury Inis Meain potatoes, fertilised in the traditional manner, with seaweed; organic vegetables grown in their polytunnel; scones, crumbles and tarts using local fruits.
Specialities include fish dishes like home-made chowder or a trio of ultra-fresh mackerel, pollock and salmon on a lemony apricot sauce, and on cool days there will be stews, and home-cooked roasts of lamb (reared by Teresa's brother), beef and gammon.
And there will be interesting desserts like Baileys or brandy carrageen, or blackberry tart.
A short wine list includes a Concannon, from the Livermore vineyard in California, which has local connections.