Friday, December 9th, 2016

Korčula: In the Land of Marco Polo

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One of my most delightful surprises of the Dalmatian Coast was lovely Korčula — the home of Marco Polo.

Korčula?  But I thought Marco Polo was from Venice!

True.  Marco Polo was born in the thirteenth century, back when Venice was a Republic spanning from the canal-filled city to what is now Turkey.  No one knows his birthplace for sure, but many historians believe it to be the Croatian island of Korčula (KOR-chu-la).

The locals have adopted Marco Polo as their own, and like every destination with one major claim to fame, half the stuff in town is named after him!

If you like to photograph architecture, flowers, and little details, Korčula is the Croatian island for you!  The island is fairly large with lots of private beaches and hidden getaways, but Korčula town is where you’ll find the beautiful buildings.

Korčula is the kind of town that lends itself to aimless wandering.  We strolled the crooked streets, peeking in the pricey jewelry shops, people-watching, and taking photos.

 

Korčula town is a fairly small and can be walked in less than an hour.  After our stroll, we found a tiny sliver of beach that was perfect for a brief dip before dinner.

The absolute best thing we did on Korčula, however, was going for sunset cocktails at Massimo Cocktail Bar.  If there is any one thing that you need to do in Korčula, this is it!

This bar is on top of a tower that was once part of the Korčula city walls.  (The walls today are mostly ruined and unwalkable.)  After a few flights of stairs, you climb a ladder to get to very top — and are rewarded with an absolutely scintillating view of Korčula and the surrounding islands in the Adriatic!

Note — this is a good place to have a drink, but NOT a good place to get drunk.  Lose your balance and you could end up falling down here:

Be smart.  Drink responsibly, and watch yourself.

Eventually, the sun sank behind a nearby mountain, leaving an orange and blue sky streaked with pink and navy clouds.

I can say now that that is probably one of the best views I can ever hope to have. Our evening was beautiful and unforgettable, and it was the perfect way to end our lovely day on Marco Polo’s island.

I visited Korčula as a guest of Busabout’s Croatia One-Way Sail.  All opinions, as always, are my own.

Comments

28 Responses to “Korčula: In the Land of Marco Polo”
  1. Gina says:

    Looks amazing. I’m planning on visiting here next summer and I wasn’t aware that Marco Polo is rumored to be born in Korcula. Fun trivia fact!

  2. Stunning sunset. We did the Busabout Sail Turkey cruise and spent many evenings like this!

  3. Oh wow, take me there now, it’s GORGEOUS!!!!!!!

  4. Absolutely gorgeous! I love the mini history lesson 🙂

  5. Hannah says:

    Stunning photos as usual Kate! That bar looks incredible- definatly added to the list!

  6. Amanda says:

    Ah, Croatia. It’s all so pretty.

    I SO need to sail the islands sometime soon…

  7. Dean says:

    Wow that bar seems pretty cool. Lovely town!

  8. I didn’t have time to visit Korcula when I was in Croatia – this is just more reason to return! 😀 Love that sunset shot.

  9. Kelli Anne says:

    Those are some stunning sunset pictures!!! Incredible!

  10. Jeff Dobbins says:

    Ah, I love Korcula. This really makes me long to return.

  11. Wow, how gorgeous!! I hope to go one day!

  12. Well now, get you being all educational here, Kate! I didn’t know that about Marco Polo or Venice. Korcula looks beautiful, although I’m not sure how I’d like climbing a ladder to get to a very high bar – I’d just worry about getting down again the whole time!

    p.s. that is NOT a beach. Beaches have sand. I’ve been burned and disappointed by pebble/rock “beaches” too many times before. Yes, I clearly have issues with the subject. Stupid rocks.

  13. Sista Voyage says:

    One thing I can say about your blog is that you expose me to the ‘less than talked about traveled areas’ of the world! Never heard of Korčula before, but looks like I will be adding it to my future voyage list!
    Can you tell me what meal did you try while there and what was your favorite dish?

    • Sista, we went out for pizza in Korčula (pizza is huge in Croatia). In terms of Croatian food, I LOVED truffle dishes in Istria (they are CHEAP up there, too!) and we had a lot of great seafood as well.

  14. Did you play Marco Polo in the sea? I hope so!!! Thats cool to know about Korcula. Here I thought I had already seen the best of Italy but now it looks like I have got to head back.

  15. I want to go to that castle bar big time! Too bad I’m leaving Europe for the next couple of years. Some pretty neat photographs there Kate.

  16. We was sailing in Croatia this summer and have visited this city too. Croatia is wonderful and very peaceful country.

  17. Drazen says:

    “…..Korčula? But I thought Marco Polo was from Venice!….”

    Korčula was under the Venice by Marsilie Zorzi, the first Venetian duke of Korcula. Zorzi took his duty in year 1254. Same year when Marco was born. Here are Depolo families still living in Korčula.

    See more at : http://www.korcula.net/mpolo/index.html

    Kate, thank you very much for your effort. Right now in Croatia we have opportunity to enjoy in your documentary broadcast on one Croatian TV. Can’t wait another episode.

  18. Great post on Korcula. I was there for five days when I visited Croatia and it was a lovely experience. I also went to Massimo Bar and yes that ladder was a bit unexpected. I had a hard time climbing it when sober!

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