St Mark’s Cathedral

Top choice cathedral in Korčula Town

Image by Vesna Celebic Lonely Planet

Dominating the little square at Korčula's heart is this magnificent 15th-century cathedral, built from Korčula limestone in a Gothic-Renaissance style by Italian and local artisans. The sculptural detail of the facade is intriguing, particularly the naked squatting figures of Adam and Eve on the door pillars, and the two-tailed mermaid and elephant on the triangular gable cornice at the very top. The bell tower is topped by a balustrade and ornate cupola, beautifully carved by Korčulan Marko Andrijić.

Inside, the nave soars 30m in height and is lined with a twin colonnade of exposed limestone pillars. Look out for the ciborium, also carved by Andrijić, and behind it the altarpiece painting Three Saints, by Tintoretto. Another painting attributed to Tintoretto or his workshop, The Annunciation, is beside the baroque altar of St Anthony.

Other noteworthy artworks include a bronze statue of St Blaise by Ivan Meštrović, near the altar on the northern aisle, and a painting by the Venetian artist Jacopo Bassano in the apse of the southern aisle. Check out the modern sculptures in the baptistery too.

Before leaving the square, notice the elegantly ornamented Arneri Palace opposite the cathedral, at the corner of the narrow street of the same name.