Croatia, South Dalmatia, Korčula
Korčula is a Croatian island in the Adriatic sea near the Dalmatian coast and the Dubrovnik-Neretva County. The island is connected by ferry to Orebić on the Pelješac peninsula, and Ubli on the island Lastovo, and durring the summer with Drvenik near Makarska. Ferries keep the connection with other cities such as Dubrovnik, Split and Rijeka, and with Italy in the summer. Korčula enchants the senses with its timeless beauty and casts an everlasting spell of wonder on those who tread upon its ancient stone. The Moreška sword dance in Korčula town, as well as the sword dances of Kumpanija and Moštra in Čara, Pupnat and Žrnovo are as much rooted in the history and soul of the island, as are the brotherhoods with bind the community
The Korkyra Baroque Festival is an international music festival established in 2012. Now in its fifth year, it will run from 3-17 September 2016. Once again, the Festival will offer a rich baroque experience in impressive culture heritage venues on the island of Korčula. The Festival has not only artistic importance but is also valuable in that it helps to promote Croatian tourism. The Korkyra Baroque Festival’s offers music of an exceptional standard, attracting tourists from all over the world and enriching the cultural offering of Korčula for tourists. The concerts promote Korčula’s churches as cultural heritage, as well as the entire island as a unique architectural complex.
Most famous Korčula`s resident is for sure Marco Polo, who was born in 1254, explored the world on a grand scale and documented his experiences; he also advised an emperor. When Marco Polo was 17 years old, he travelled from Venice to China with his father Nicola and his uncle Mateo.
One of the biggest naval battles in the Middle Ages took place in vicinity of Korčula, just in front of the promontory Ražnjić at the nowadays Lumbarda. While the Venetian had their biggest fleet ever sent to sea comprising 96 galleys and three big ships the Genoese fleet consisted of only 85 galleys.
The only previous Venetian fleet of the same magnitude was the one equipped for Saint League at the battle of Lepanto in 1571. all Venetian vessels were captured or destroyed, including Admiral Dandolo´s big ship. The entire galley of the Polos was destroyed – a big ship with a total of 120 oars. Marko Polo found himself in prison in Genoa, together with thousands of his comrades. In his uncomfortable prison cell, he started to dictate his memoirs of the magnificent travels to China, to Rustichello the writer from Pisa of romantic tales. If the battle in vicinity of Korčula had not taken place, the stormy and exciting biography of Marko Polo might never have been written. The masterpiece of adventurous and travel literature left unknown!