The most picturesque town on the island of Korčula is the town of the same name, in the north-eastern tip of the island. It hides many significant monuments. The highest point of the neighbouring Pelješac peninsula, the peak of Sveti Ilija rises just opposite the town. What to do in Korčula? We will show you the best holiday activities.
This article gives you an overview of the following topics:
- Things to do in Korčula: Beautiful beaches and bays
- What to do in Korčula: Nature is calling
- Things to do in Korčula: Discover the highlights of the town!
- Traditions and events in Korčula
- Gastronomy of Korčula
The main beach of Korčula, Banje, is ideal for families with children due to its numerous facilities. This beach is relatively crowded in high season, therefore we recommend arriving in the early hours. The beach is only a 5-minute walk from the Old Town. It is 40 metres long and 6 metres wide. You can rent a beach umbrella and a sun lounger on the beach. There are a yacht club and some restaurants nearby. Sveti Nikola is also close, only a 5-minute walk from the Sveti Nikola Church in the Old Town. The pebble beach at the Mandrač harbour has crystal clear water. We recommend it for families with small children.
The island of Badija is the largest of the 19 islets around the town of Korčula. On the south side, long pebble beaches await tourists, and many bays are also great for diving. We recommend visiting the nearby Vrnik Island as well. It has pebble beaches and hidden, rocky bays where you can swim in the crystal clear sea. In addition, they offer wonderful views over the neighbouring islands.
This park is only 10 minutes from the Old Town of Korčula. You can take a pleasant walk on the narrow footpaths, and the bay of Luka Korčulanska is also part of the park. One of the most interesting parts of Hober Park is Pjaceta, which is a large clearing under the trees. You can rest on stone benches while enjoying the undisturbed, idyllic silence of nature. Naplov is another place to see. It is a large drainage area used to collect rainwater. Visiting the park is always a relaxing experience. On hot summer days, tall pine trees provide cooling shade.
The archipelago consists of 19 islands that are located near the end of the eastern part of Korčula, not far from the old town. The first and closest island is Badija, where you can visit a monastery built-in 1392 and a chapel from the 15th century.. In addition to these monuments, we recommend visiting the 4 km promenade along the coast. The island is about 1 km2 in size, characterised by a beautiful natural environment. It is covered with dense maccia, or evergreen shrubs, pine forests, citrus trees and olive trees. Badija is also home to friendly moose.
Vrnik is the second-largest island, where you can find a quarry from the Roman Empire era. Today, it is the oldest and the most famous quarry of Korčula. Only a couple of families live in Vrnik, and there is a town that received the same name as the island.
On the island of Sutvara, you can also find a tiny beach whereas on Majsan the ruins of a 5th-century old temple. Furthermore, Sestrica consists of two islands: the smaller is Mala Sestrica, the larger is Vela Sestrica. The most famous sight of the latter one is an abandoned light tower erected in 1871.
It is an interesting fact that the original town wall surrounding the old town and its numerous bastions are still standing in Korčula. For this reason, it is often called “little Dubrovnik.”
Saint Mark’s Cathedral
One of the major sights and the biggest building of Korčula island is the Saint Mark’s Cathedral built-in Gothic-Renaissance style. The site is located in the old town of Korčula, on the Main Square. In spite of being built from 1301, the construction of the Cathedral was finished only by the 15th century. Moreover, owing to the alter painting made by the Italian painter, Tintoretto, and the unique sculptures of the church it is regarded as one of the symbols of Korčula. The Bell Tower offers wonderful views over the town and Pelješac Channel.
The birthplace of Marco Polo
According to the locals, the famous Venetian merchantman, traveller, and writer, Marco Polo was born on the island of Korčula. If you are here in Korčula, you can visit the remains of his assumed birthplace. The building has three floors and a lookout, where you can take a look at pictures and maps of Marco Polo’s explorations. You can get a beautiful view from the highest point of the tower. Not only can you admire Korčula from the tower, but also the surrounding islands.
Revelin Tower and the town gates
Two town gates lead to the picturesque Old Town of Korčula. One of them is Kopnena Vrata from 1650, located on the south side, also called Land Gate. The 15th-century Revelin Tower rises above it, offering gorgeous views over the area. Primorska Vrata, or the Sea Gate, stands on the west side.
Gabrielis Palace was built-in the 15th and 16th centuries. It is located in the middle of the Old Town. The Palace is home to the Town Museum, showcasing the history of Korčula Island starting from ancient times up until the 20th century. The collection provides insight into the most important activities in the countryside. These include old crafts, stone carving and shipbuilding. Among the more valuable works of art it is important to mention the bronze door knocker of the Italian sculptor, Tiziano Aspetti, and a piano from 1819, played by Edith Streicher, a friend of the world-famous German composer, Beethoven.
In the case of visiting Korčula, you have to watch Moreška, the traditional game of the island. The interesting feature of the original Spanish or Arabic game is that it was played in almost every Mediterranean country in medieval times. However, today Korčula is the only place in the world where people can watch this game. Additionally, real swords are used during the show. Besides Moreška, you can watch ballets performed with swords, for example, Moštra or Kumpanjija. The Marco Polo Festival is also an important event, which has been held every summer since 1996. The festival offers great concerts and fine wine specialities. In the evenings, you can watch the performances of klapa choirs.
In addition to the events, there are several entertainment options in this south Dalmatian town. One of the most popular places in Korčula is Dno Dna Bar, where you can have a coffee during the day and dance to the music of local musicians in the evening. For fine drinks and good music, visit Tramonto Cocktail or Massimo.
This Croatian resort town has several restaurants and taverns. Konoba Marinero is one of the best choices, offering fresh seafood dishes and traditional meals every day. If you are visiting, try the local wines. This cosy restaurant is not far from Marco Polo’s supposed birthplace, so you can visit it when discovering the town’s landmarks.
The Kanavelic restaurant in the Old Town of Korčula mostly offers fish dishes. Gourmets can also try delicious meals with seafood or mussels. The restaurant’s terrace is in the garden of Kanavelic Palace, surrounded by a renaissance wall, so the atmosphere reminds us of traditional Croatian architecture. Not a fan of modern culinary experiences? There are some great pizzerias, but you can always choose from international dishes in local restaurants.
The coastal town’s fruit and vegetable market are Rotonda, right next to Plokata Square and Rampada Tower. It is a small, circular square, surrounded by a low wall – hence the name. We recommend visiting the market early in the morning if you want to find the best quality products.
In this article, we have selected from the best holiday activities. If you drop anchor here, you can relax at beautiful beaches, see unforgettable historic monuments and try the best local delicacies. Read more if you plan Korčula sailing or rent a boat in Korčula.