Photos: Boris Kačan, Neven Fazinić, Marko Sitar, Damir Pačić, Mario Hlača Čara, Maja Šain, Dea Botica, TZ Korčula
The town of Korčula is one of the most beautiful and best-preserved medieval towns on the Croatian coast, hugely popular with boaters because of a superb marina located in the city centre, the town’s rich history and excellent cuisine
Many boaters who come to the Adriatic often say that on the Croatian coast and islands, the culture of life near the sea is intertwined with natural and historical sights, often wrapped in the irresistible charm of summer parties and underlined by superb cuisine.
Among a thousand plus Adriatic islands, Korčula is completely different. Full of legends, history and delicious food, it is a Mediterranean story set in stone that in recent years has become one of the ‘must see’ destinations for boaters in the Adriatic. ACI Marina Korčula, situated in the very centre of the town, is an ideal starting point for exploring one of the most beautiful and best-preserved medieval towns on the Croatian coast.
Korčula will enchant you with its timeless beauty; the bygone times left a mark in the stone that can tell stories. The main street neatly cuts through the city, dividing it into the eastern and western half, and the side streets extending to the city walls are strongly reminiscent of a herringbone. Such a plan allows free circulation of air, but also protects against strong winds.
The historic centre is built on a small peninsula that protrudes into the strait between the island and the mainland, narrowing it to only 1,270 m. The possibility of monitoring the passage of galleys and sailing ships along the eastern Adriatic coast was the reason for the development of the walled city, which provided this important service to various masters. Korčula was surrounded by walls and towers from the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries.
Stonemasonry and shipbuilding have been Korčula’s most important trades since ancient times. Quality stone from Korčula’s quarries was widely known and exported all over the world. In the 15th and 16th centuries, Italian and local builders erected richly decorated palaces and churches. Marko Andrijić, a master builder from Korčula, finished the bell tower and built a ciborium over the main altar of St Mark’s Cathedral, whose altarpiece was painted by the Italian painter Jacopo Tintoretto. There are three confraternities in the town of Korčula: the Confraternity of All Saints (1301), the Confraternity of St Roch (1575) and the Confraternity of St Michael or Our Lady of Consolation/the Girdle (1603). Confraternities participate in processions throughout the year, the most impressive of which are held during the Holy Week and on Good Friday, as well as on 29 July, the feast day of St Theodore (one of the two heavenly protectors of the city of Korčula), when all the valuables are brought out – big candles called torci, processional candle holders, or cereferali, crosses and all other shiny liturgical objects that are in the confraternities’ possession. You will get the best insight into Korčula’s rich history by visiting the Gabrielis Palace, which houses the Korčula City Museum, while the numerous narrow streets lined with charming entrances and elegant palaces will show you all the grandeur of architecture and cultural heritage.