Sea tales, stormy characters and centuries of history are imprinted in Wexford. And the Vikings played a starring role in that history from the early 9th century when they established a small settlement at the mouth of the River Slaney, which they called "Ueigsfjord", meaning "the ford of the waterlogged island".
Today, you can see their legacy in less obvious way, as many of their names are still carried on by the local population, including surnames such as including MacAuliffe (Son of Olaf) and MacManus (Son of Magnus).
The Vikings spent 300 years making Wexford a true Viking town. They worked as traders, became allies to the local Gaelic kings, and hired themselves out as mercenaries. You can still see their influence as you walk through the winding streets of the town centre, and follow the narrow lanes that slope down towards the quay. Because in a Viking town, all roads lead to the water.
If you want to experience Wexford at its bustling best, make sure you visit during the annual Wexford Festival Opera, a fixture in the town’s cultural life since 1951.