When it comes to that sense of fairytale beauty and wonder which Croatia is famous for, few sights are as iconic as Korčula’s Old Town district. In fact, at the docks, the view walking into Old Town before you even reach it is quite extraordinary. The walls surrounding the town are very picturesque here, and give you the sense that you are heading someplace very special and unique.
Old Town itself is renowned for its authenticity and the “back in time” vibe you get when walking its streets. Stop in at the city museum to learn more about the history and culture of Korčula, and then pop by the boutiques and restaurants (more on that in a bit).
For history buffs, perhaps the most fascinating destination in Korčula is the supposed childhood home of Marco Polo. Why “supposed?” Well, historical evidence on this point is sparse, and nobody is entirely certain that Marco Polo was from here. You can however take a tour through the house itself, which is very charming, and either way, you will learn a lot about this famous historical personage. You will also notice while you are wandering around town that Marco Polo’s name shows up a lot—in the names of boutique shops for example.
Looking for other cool sites to explore in Korčula town? Architecture fans should visit St. Mark’s Cathedral, which combines Romanesque, Baroque, and Gothic styles.
The Cathedral Treasury next door is quite cool as well. For a great view of the entire town, take a walk up to the summit of St. Anthony’s hill, two kilometres southwest of the town centre.
If you are looking for a breather from the crowds of the town, you can head out to one of Korčula’s lovely beaches. You’ll find pebble beaches along the north shore, and sandy beaches along the south shore.
What are some of the best beaches worth checking out? Consider starting with Lumbarda. You’ll find Lumbarda south of the village, concealed by a stand of agaves. There is a volleyball court, a bar for refreshments, shallow water, and warm sand.
While Lumbarda is a beautiful spot to relax for an afternoon, it can also be a crowded one during peak season. If you want to head somewhere more secluded, consider Bačva beach at Žrnovo. This beach is a bit more out-of-the-way, and can only be accessed via a narrow, steep road, or by boat. You’ll find that this beach is more secluded, but conveniently enough, there is still a hut for purchasing refreshments.
Still looking for the perfect beach on Korčula? Others to consider include Korčula town beach, Bilin Žal, Pupnat or Vela Luka. Baija is also fun to explore with its coves, monastery and friendly deer.
If you’ve had enough relaxing and are ready to party, you’ll find that Korčula offers an exciting nightlife. The most famous spot to dance and drink is Boogie Jungle, which you’ll find on a terraced hillside several kilometres from the town. This is a newer establishment, opened in 2012 and enlarged again a year later. With its al-fresco terraces and awnings, it has a unique ambiance and can hold up to 1,500 revellers. The drink list is huge, and DJs from around the world play cool beats all night long.
Looking for something a bit more laid-back? Korčula has a number of bars which deserve a mention as well. You’ll find Beach Bar Mate is a delightful stop for local wine as well as sandwiches made with fresh bread. You should also visit Bili cvitak, which has a back room for dancing and a terrace for lounging around with a drink in the warm summer air.
Then there is Kairos, a delightful cocktail bar and café spanning three floors and two terraces. This is a wonderful spot to taste red and white wines from the area. Also be sure to visit Massimo Cocktail Bar on top of the historic Zakerjan Tower. To get here, you need to climb up a flight of stairs followed by a ladder. Nowhere else will you find a bar so distinctly Croatian.
You now know some of the best spots to taste local Croatian wines. But where should you consider dining? One great choice if you are looking for sumptuous luxury is Lešić-Dimitri, also known simply as “LD.” This is also an excellent restaurant for sampling wines, and you can taste the delicious gourmet Croatian delicacies prepared by chef Toni Erceg. The menu changes every day.
If you prefer a family atmosphere with a more casual ambiance, head to Adio Mare, the oldest family-run restaurant in town. Here you can enjoy the best of traditional Dalmatian cuisine in an authentic environment. Try the brodet fish stew or the pasta with beans, and don’t miss out on the local wines.
If you are willing to journey out of town, you’ll find Ranč Maha 8 kilometres up the road in the hills nearby. At this ranch-style restaurant, you can enjoy a selection of local favourites including peka and pršut.
On that note, there is actually a lot to see and do outside of Korčula town. You already know about Lumbarda beach; while you are in Lumbarda, you should also check out the Popić Winery. While on your wine tour, you should also swing by Toreta Winery in Smokvica. Finally, don’t miss the opportunity to stop by Blato, a beautiful rural town with a rich history. The Ethnographic Collection is not to be missed. You can also stop by the working farm of Mala Kapja for a delicious local meal.
It will be difficult to say goodbye to lovely Korčula with its charming old towns and its blissful beaches, but don’t fret—there are still two days left in your 7 Day Active Sailing Itinerary, and many more adventures await you.
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