Korcula, Vela Luka Buoys
The town of Vela Luka is located in the eastern end of the inlet of Zaljev Vela Luka at the western end of Otok Korcula. Approaching up the inlet watch for the lit islet of Kamenjak on the north shore around 2nm inside the western end of the inlet, and for the larger unlit island of Osjak on the south side of the inlet around 3nm in. The entrance to the greater Vela Luka harbour is well lit with a red light on the north shore and a white light on the end of the ferry pier. Beyond this a green light marks the western end of the town harbour wall.
In the area to the east of the ferry pier and on the southern side of the rode 13 mooring buoys have been laid for 2012 with discussion of another 7 being added later in the year or for 2013. These buoys are rated (according to the harbour master’s assistant) for boat up to 15 metres or 49 feet.
Their location is in an area which was previously used for anchoring but was less favoured due to the shallowness of water close to the shore and the swell raised both by arrival of the ferry and by any persistent westerly winds. The buoys appear to be laid in such a way that depth is not an issue (though deep draft boats should take care as a matter of course.)
While this area of the harbour does provide reasonable all round shelter there is still an issue of swells both from the ferry (which can whip up an uncomfortable 1m swell in outer anchorages as it approaches Vela Luka) and from westerly wind.
Additional caution should also be taken over the length of your vessel. To the eye these buoys seem uncomfortably close to each other. In a 36 foot boat it felt quite comfortable, but on something at the outer end of the rated length (49 feet) it may become tight depending on the size of your neighbours.
These buoys provide a secure mooring in an area where the Town Harbour and the main anchorage is often busy. They are convenient for access to the shore by any one of a number of ladders and steps on the harbour wall to the north, which is close enough to be easily reachable by oar alone should you not want to man-handle your outboard.
There are also mooring buoys located in the area to the north of the Town Harbour Wall, but these appear to be entirely privately owned and are used by local fishing vessels and sailing yachts.
Vela Luka is a pleasant and useful stopping off point at the western end of Otok Korcula, whether on the way to Lastovo or Vis, or intending to head along the Peljeski Kanal to Korcula Town and points south. One thing to remember however is that the town and its anchorages lie 5nm east of the western tip of the island, so allow at least another hour on your travel time as you head in or out from the port to traverse the length of the inlet.
Most of the town services and most accessible eateries are located along the eastern shore, which is peppered with old and often ramshackle wooden jetties that run out into the harbour over narrow stretches of shingle beach and bare rock.
Ferries arrive from Split once or twice a day and head on to (or return from) Lastovo, carrying cars and passengers. From the centre of town you can then catch buses that run to all of the major settlements on the island including Blato (the major inland settlement 5 miles to the west of Vela Luka) and Korcula Town. Highlights within the town centre around its museum and art gallery which includes an archaeological collection of prehistoric artefacts from the ‘Vela Spila’ or great cave and some interesting paintings and two Henry Moore sculptures. The building itself was decorated with mosaics during an international art festival in 1968.
For more information about Korcula click here
For more information about Vela Luka click here
42°57’80” N 16°43’02”E
Shelter: Good though westerlies can cause a swell to build
Depths: 4-10? metres
Buoys: 13 (+7 more in 2013)
Holding: Buoys rated for vessels up to 15m or 49ft
Hazards: Check depth and also distance to neighbouring vessels
Services: There is a harbour master and a Customs office.
Fuel: Immediately west of the Town Harbour
Harbour Master: +385 (0)20 812 023
Port of Entry:
Customs: Office adjacent to the Post Office
Police: (Korcula Town) +385 (0)20 812-026
Medical Centre: +385 (0)20 812-040
Vets: (Korcula Town) +385 (020) 711-751
Wednesday, 5 September 2012
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