Island and town Korcula

Story about island and old town Korcula

Island of Korčula is on the border of middle and south Dalmatia. It is known for the beauty of its nature and a rich historic heritage. From the mainland, peninsula Pelješac, the island is separated by the Pelješki channel, which smallest width is 1270 meters. Although it takes days to explore the island natural beauty, history , tradition and all the places, it's location becomes ideal starting point to get to know the rest of Dalmatia.


Park of nature Lastovo, National park Mljet and world known tourist destination Hvar are Korčula's first neighbors. Pearl of the Adriatic-Dubrovnik, Ston on Pelješac, the delta of Neretva, Omiš with the most cleanest river Cetina, then Split, an ancient site Salona and city of Trogir are also in the vicinity and a number of organized day-tours which adventurers can embark is astonishing


There is simply no better position to get to know this part of Dalamtia. Korčula is the sixth largest Crotian island. Length of the shore is 182 km, and there are 96 cove's and cape's. The island is surrounded by 48 cliffs and small islands. From east to west, Island Korčula has following places Lumbarda, Korcula, Zrnovo, Pupnat, Racisce, Cara, Smokvica, Blato and Vela Luka.


History of Korcula

Life on this most beautiful Dalmatian island started in ancient times. More accurately in Paleolithic. Vela Spila in Vela Luka is one the most significant sites from the Paleolithic in Dalmatia and Croatia.


The name Korčula was given by ancient Greeks. They named it Korkyra Melaina, which means Black Korčula. They gave it that name because of the thick holm oak (lat. Quercus ilex) and black pine (lat. Pinus Nigra) forest. According to the legend from the Greek mythology city of Korčula was founded by Antenor, Trojan warrior in XI. Century BC. Also there is a version saying that it was Aeneas himself founded Korčula. However it is sure that Korčula was an important place for Ancient Greek as evidenced by the various archaeological objects found from that era. The most valuable one is the Lumbarda’s Psephisma dating from the 3rd century BC and is considered the oldest record in stone in Croatia.


The most famous inhabitant of Korčula is the world-famous travel writer and Venetian merchant Marco Polo. His birth house is located in the old town of Korčula. Around him and his life "Il Milione" events, more or less truthful, are told.


Each place on Korčula has a rich past and tradition, for it would take days to tell it all. We leave it up to you to discover it . We will just give you a hint about the cake Lumblija and Batlle at Giča. Two stories which you can discover if you visit Blato and Prižba.



Korcula City:


The old part of the town is enclosed with medieval walls and the streets are organized in the shape of a fish skeleton. The urbanism layout is preserved to this day and that ads an additional uniqueness the city. The most beautiful examples of churches and palaces were built in the 15th and 16th century in a mixture of gothic and renesanse style. The cathedral of Saint Mark is located in the center of the town. The most prominent place on the small peninsula.

You can find out more about the town's history at the Town museum Korčula which is across the street from the St. Mark's Cathedrala and also at the Abbot colection situated next to the cathedral. In the small All Saints Church there is an exhibition of icons which date from the 13th -19th century.


In the old part of the town you can also visit the house of Marco Polo who is believed to been born in Korcula 1254.
It is known that Marco Polo took part in the naval battle, as a captain of a ship, in 1298 between Venice (which at that time controlled Korcula) and Genoa. The Genoese captured him, and he in the Genoese prison starts writing his travels to China. In honor of that event each year a reconstruction of the battle is held. It has been named the Battle of Marco Polo.


A museum of Marco Polo has been opened in Korcula since 2012. In the museum there is a seven scene tour with amazing scenery and hyper-realistic dolls, accompanied by an audio guide. It fascinatedly depicts Marco Polo's life, its voyages from Korčula, through the desert caravans all the way to the court of the famous Mongolian leader Kublai Khan.