Abandoned Army Tunnels of Korčula

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If you’re interested in really stepping out of the tourist trails on Korčula, maybe former army tunnels are your thing.

Abandoned former JNA tunnels on the Korčula Island, near Lumbarda on the easternmost tip of the island are presented on the Atlas Obscura website, a well known internet destination aimed at promoting the less known, amazing, hidden spots around the world.

While Croatia was still part of Yugoslavia, there was significant army (and navy, of course) presence on the Croatian islands. For strategic reasons obvious to anyone who’s ever seen the map of this part of central Adriatic, Korčula Island was no exception, and the former Yugoslav National Army (JNA, as it was called here) had a lot of personnel, installations and various types of arms and ammunitions on the island, including the artillery battery located at the easternmost tip of the island, past Lumbarda and both Vela Pržina and Bilin Žal beaches, located perfectly to monitor the entrance to the Pelješki kanal between Pelješac and Korčula.

After JNA has been forced out of the island (and the rest of Croatia) during the Independence war of early nineties, those concrete tunnels connecting the guns and supplies installations, and allowing for safety of personnel manning those guns were all that was left behind. The area has been completely demilitarized, and there’s no army presence of any kind there these days, although some of the buildings have been repurposed and are currently being used, so you won’t be able to explore around those.

So, if you’re interested in that kind of history, you will be able to explore the abandoned buildings, some rusting trucks no one bothered to tow away, and some other equipment that’s just left there for the elements to take care of. There are numerous bunkers on the peninsula, most of them facing south-east between cape Ražnjić and Vela Pržina beach, as well as some machine gun and heavy artillery nests. At the coordinates given at Atlas Obscura you will be able to enter the tunnels (N 42° 54.745, E 17° 11.457), which should be approached with caution as they have not been taken care of and could potentially be dangerous. There are several entrances, and there’s at least several hundred meters of those tunnels, but please be careful if you decide to go in, make sure to bring strong lamps and quality footwear if you want to explore them!


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