Kornati, The Most Indented Archipelago
Kornati are not a place for partying
While I was toured the islands in the boat under the hot sun of the August afternoon, I completely understand the love that the hosts have for the endless blue of the islands. The sea is changing in dozens of blue shades, from the darkest to the incredible turquoise…
These are not places that will be visited by young eager to party and entertainment such as National Park Krka. Here come the people who appreciate nature, beauty, and peace, people who want discretion and be away from the eyes of the world.
The largest island in the archipelago is Kornat. But the special feature and identifiability of the Kornati archipelago make so many islands and islets.
Only a quarter of the Kornati is the National Park Kornati without other islands of the archipelago, which stretches on 220 km2 and has 89 islands, islets and rocks with approximately 238 km of coastline.
Visit them all, touch, and feel their savage beauty are project of every lover of the sea.
Kornati is the densest archipelago in the Mediterranean. Nowhere in the sea is not on so little space squeezed so many islands.
The consequence of burning pastures due to the attempts of cultivation of the same is almost lunar landscape of the Kornati.
The most important and most impressive Kornat product is certainly the wall, precisely drystone wall. One of the basic characteristics of the drystone walls is their orientation. Because all large islands are elongated, all the walls are built from sea to sea, which means from one side of the island to the other. The wall is high as much as necessary so the sheep can’t jump over into someone else’s pasture. It is wide as it is necessary so the wind couldn’t break the wall.
Another artifact in the Kornati karst attracts equal attention as the drystone walls. These are isolated fences – olive enclosed by wide drystone walls. You can see them on more than a hundred places in the archipelago, at “the most unexpected” locations.
With its emergence, modes of formation, geology, and soils Kornati relief has no difference from other islands in the Adriatic, especially its neighbor islands. However, only here you can find one type of littoral which couldn’t find anywhere else in the Adriatic. This special configuration in the local dialect of the islanders called the crown, and in professional and media circles usually called cliffs. The crowns were created by tectonic faults which are at the part of the open sea broke off and disappeared under the sea. The subsequent erosion processes under the influence of wind and sea formed a series of cliffs that protect islands from the open sea.
The Fort Tureta
On the hill above Tarac was built fort Tureta in the 6th century, its military crew was ensuring safe sailing through the Kornati Channel. Tureta is the only fort from that time on the Adriatic that was not destroyed, apparently because it was built on the site with no settlement. The fort is now in disrepair.
Church of Our Lady of Tarac
This was a large church for that time (about 20×13 meters) and it’s hard to believe that it was served only to local believers since traces of a settlement wasn’t found. It is more likely that it was a sanctuary for sailors who are looking for sheltered bays of Sipnata, Levrnaka or Telascica waiting for favorable winds for sailing on the Adriatic. Only the apse and part of the foundation are saved till today. In the late Middle Ages was built the church dedicated to Our Lady of the Visitation, and popularly known as Our Lady of the Tarca. On the first Sunday in July are held bless of the fields and the sea. This votive procession of boats is one of the most beautiful religious events in Croatia.
Sports and Nautica
Visitors and tourist can cruise, can engage in recreational fishing, scuba diving, can swim and enjoy in the crystal clear waters and observing plants and animals, can walk on marked paths, but can’t camping where they want, only in allowed camps that are authorized to work (Ravni Zakan, Levrnaka). Anchoring and overnight stay on boats are allowed only in 16 specific bay in the area of National Park. Dock for yachts is available in 34 places in the Kornati National Park. Visitors can supply with food in Murter and surrounding areas, and in the summer season, it is possible to supply the ships that are circling Kornati. On the island of Vela Panitula (within the ACI Piskera) is a small shop.
The best way to visit Kornati archipelago is with a rented boat or with excursions where you can contact tour guide in many places at the Adriatic.
Code of Conduct in the National Park Kornati
Tickets – Visitors must have a ticket for each day of their stay in the park, and the tickets are buying at the reception of National Park Kornati in the area of the park or at points of sale on the mainland (it is cheaper if you buy outside the boundaries of the park).
Zone of strict protection (not permitted access to visitors) – these are the areas around the islets Purara, reefs Klint and Volic, islets Mrtenjak, islets Klobucar, and the islets Mali and Veliki Obrucan.
Navigation, anchoring, and mooring of a vessel – sailing is permitted, except in the zones under protection. Anchoring and overnight stay are permitted in the coves Stiniva, Statival, Lupeska, Tomasovac – Suha Punta, Sipnate, Lucica, Kravjacica, Striznja, Vruje, Gujak, Opat, Smokvica, Ravni Zakan, Lavsa, Piskera – Vela Panitula and cave Anica on Levrnaka.
Hiking trails – is allowed only on marked trails, because the land area of Kornati National Park is privately owned.
Swimming and scuba diving – is allowed, except within the zones under protection. Diving is allowed only in organized groups and with permission. Information and permits can obtain at the premises of the Public Institution of National Park Kornati in Murter or at the receptions of National Park Kornati in the area of the park.
Recreational fishing – in the National Park Kornati (except in the zones of the strict protection) is allowed recreational fishing only with a previously obtained permit issued by the Public Institution of National Park Kornati.