Korcula Island

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... a green saphire in the blue waters of the Adriatic!

You'll find the island of Korcula in the central archipelago of Dalmatia.

It covers an area of about 280 square kilometers and contains a modest population of 17,038 people. Klupca and Kom are the two highest peaks, at 568 m and 510 m respectively.

The island offers the visitor a temperate climate with an average January temperature of 9.8 degrees and July highs of up to 26.9 degrees.

Most of the island is rich in the flora of the Mediterranean, although certain areas contain pine forests. The majority of the local economy focuses on farming, wine, fishing, shipbuilding, and tourism.

Summer tourists have been flocking to the island for many years, while visitors coming to experience boating on the blue waters surrounding Korcula has grown in popularity only recently.

The main towns situated along the coast of the island include Korcula, Lumbarda, Vela Luka, and Raciste. Located in the interior are Blato, Zrnovo, Smokvica, Cara and Pupnat.

Photo of Korcula town

The island's regional road connects most of these destinations - you can reach the island itself by ferry from the Croatian mainland.

This beautiful island in the Mediterranean has a long and storied past, going back to the Neolithic era and the Bronze Age. The Greeks colonized the area as well during the 5th and 6th centuries BC. At this point in history the island was called Korkyra Melaina.

Then the Romans took over in 35 BC - you can still see parts of ancient Roman settlements in the area of Lumbarda, Vela Luka, Blago and on Pelegrin. In 493 AD the island was transferred over to the rule of the state of Ostrogoth, going to Byzantine rule in 555.

As the 9th century rolled around, the Nerentani took over until the year 1000 when Venice ruled over the land in the vicinity. In 1180 the Hungarian-Croatian king ruled it, and from 1221 onward there were several rulers in charge from places as diverse as Venice, Bosnia, and the Dubrovnik Republic in the 15th century.

The island was often the center of attack from the Turks and pirates at the beginning of the 18th century, which is why important spots on the island were fortified to provide protection to the residents. In fact, the town was heavily fortified.

Essentially, the island went through many different rulers and kingdoms as the history of the region unfolded over the centuries, even coming under the rule of Italy in recent history between 1918-1921. It was then annexed to Croatia.

The town of Korcula is in the center of the island and boasts a diverse and interesting cultural heritage. You can view the town ramparts to get a feel for the type of fortification system that was set up to protect the town, and walk through the old streets.

Photo of fortification Korcula

The town is a popular tourist destination in southern Croatia. The local economy consists of shipbuilding, especially in Vela Luka, as well as stone cutting. This involves the extraction of white marble from a quarry on the east coast.

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