The seaside resort of Wicklow town is also the county town. Standing on the lower slopes of Ballyguile Hill, it overlooks a wide bay fringed by a crescent curve of coast.
St Mantan, after whose church the town is named, lived at the time of St Patrick. Long after this the town was occupied by the Danes, who called it Wykinglo and made it one of their main maritime bases on the east coast. After the Anglo-Norman invasion in the twelfth century, Wicklow was included in the large grants of land made by Strongbow to Maurice Fitzgerald. Until the seventeenth century the town was repeatedly attacked, as the O' Tooles and O'Byrnes contended with the English for it.
The old town of narrow streets has been considerably modernised, but it still retains much of its old-world atmosphere.
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