Korčula is a historic fortified town on the protected east coast of the island of Korčula, with an approximate population of 2900 inhabitants. The old city is surrounded by walls, and the streets are arranged in a herringbone pattern allowing free circulation of air but protecting against strong winds. The town’s historic sites include the central Gothic and Renaissance Cathedral of St Mark, the Town Hall, and the massive city fortifications. The 15th-century Franciscan monastery with a beautiful cloister is situated on the islet of Badija, near Korčula Town.
St. Mark’s Cathedral houses ‘Pieta’ by Ivan Meštrović and Jesus Christ the Redeemer by Frano Kršinić.
Another work of the great Ivan Meštrović, the statue of St. Blasius (Sv. Vlaho), the patron saint of Dubrovnik together with four reliefs of the blessed Alojzije Stepinac (Kerdić), Mother Theresa, Marija Propetog Petković, and Ivan Merc ( A. Lozica) is situated next to the entrance to the sacristy which is adorned with a relief of St. Michael, the remarkable work of an unknown master (14/15 c.).
It is believed that the greatest traveler and explorer of all time, Marko Polo, was born in Korčula in 1254.
The family house of the Polos in Venice was replaced by a theatre, whereas Korčula has preserved his family house in memory of the great Marko. Today the Depolo family remains the oldest Korčulan family.
Above the entrance of the Land Gate, there are two symbols marking Korčula’s history: a bas-relief with the winged lion of St. Mark, symbolizing the reign of the Venetian Republic, and a stone tablet commemorating the 1000th anniversary of the coronation of the first Croatian king, Tomislav.
The Korcula historic centre is built on a small peninsula which narrows the passage between the island and the mainland to 1270 metres. At the time, the reason for establishing the fortified town at this particular point was the obvious potential for controlling shipping along the eastern coast of the Adriatic.
Korcula started developing more rapidly from the 13th c. when the Statute of the town and island was proclaimed when Marco Polo was travelling what is now known as the Silk Road and when the ducal Venetian Zorzi family administered Korcula. The town’s towers and ramparts were raised and made stronger and the houses and churches loftier and more elegant.
With its cultural landmarks and popular outdoor activities, excellent food and wines as well as beautiful beaches, Korčula provides a haven and a getaway from everyday stress!
Depending on your interests and the duration of your stay, we have selected several options to help you plan your stay on our beautiful island.
Walk the streets of the town of Korčula and take in one of the best-preserved medieval Mediterranean towns, renowned for its urban architecture.