Guide to Mljet Island, Croatia
Welcome to Mljet island, the most beautiful and most forested island of the Adriatic. It’s one of the most attractive pearl of the Mediterranean. The rich vegetation of the island, assigned to Mljet Park a name of a Green Island.
Isolated and untouched, island of mystery, olive groves, vineyards and rich forests, is ideal for exploring the rich flora and fauna and to enjoy the pristine beauty of the nature.
The legend of Ulysses and Calypso!
Is Island of Mljet Homer’s Ogygia? Many believe Mljet to be Homer’s “Ogygia” where the beautiful goddess Calypso kept Odysseus as her lover for seven years during his traveling from the Trojan War to return home. There is a cave on Mljet below the village of Babino Polje that matches to some Homer’s description of Calypso’s lush cave.
The island is located in the South Dalmatian Archipelago, 37 km long with an average width of 3 km. As you can see on Mljet map it extends parallel to the Peljesac peninsula
It is separated with Mljet channel, 8 km wide. The nearest island on west side is Korcula island only 18 km away while Dubrovnik on the south, is just 30 km away.
This island hosts one of the most beautiful national parks in Croatia, Mljet National Park. National Park covers its northwestern part with an area of 5.375 ha of protected land and surrounding sea.
This area was proclaimed as national park 11 November 1960 and represents the first institutionalized attempt to protect an original ecosystem in the Adriatic.
The area of national park is famous for two salt lakes, the Great Lake, covering an area of 145 ha, with a maximum depth of 46 m and the Small Lake with an area of 24 ha and a maximum depth of 29 m.
On the small island of St. Mary, in the southern part of Mljet Great Lakes, there is a Benedictine monastery with the church of St. Mary. Its area is 0.5 hectares. It was built in the period from 1177th to 1198th year. The Benedictines are the first on the island who built a monastery and then the church. Church over the centuries changed its appearance due to styles from Renaissance to Baroque, however the central part of the Romanesque.
The natural secrets of both lakes have attracted many scientists over the years, as well as other nature lovers from a wide range of professions and personal interests.
The rich vegetation of the island, especially in the area of the national Park, explains why Mljet island is also known as a Green Island.
You can stroll along the lakes on paths shaded by pine trees, biking through the park, rent a kayak to paddle the lakes or simply swim the clear, blue water.
When to visit Mljet island National Park?
National Park can be visited all year round, except during the period from November to March, when the visit is possible only at the special permission. Entrance tickets can be purchased at the spot or online.
Tickets include the right to walk through only marked footpaths around Small and Great lakes, permission to visit belvedere points, Montokuc and Veliki gradac.
Entrance to the park by car is strictly prohibited and it has to be left on parking places outside the the boundaries of the park.
Bikes rental? Bikes can be rented at three locations in the National Park at Pomena, Malo jezero (Small Lake) and Vrbovica near (Great Lake)Veliko jezero. Canoes and kayaks can also be rented at (Small Lake) Malo jezero, while scooters can be rented at Pomena.
There are asphalt and gravel cycling paths of different characteristics and levels in the National Park.
Walking paths? There is a great number of walking paths in the National Park. For your own safety, it’s recommend that you move only on strictly marked walking pathways.
Getting to Mljet island
The island can be reached from different directions. If you are driving there is only car ferry from Peljesac peninsula:
- Car ferry line N° 832 Prapratno (Peljesac peninsula) – Sobra (Mljet island) . Note: This line belongs to Dubrovnik district.
- Getting from Split to Mljet is possible by catamaran line (Krilo company) on high-speed line Split-Brac-Hvar-Korcula-Mljet-Dubrovnik.
Where to stay on Mljet island?
If you are looking for accommodation on this island, I recommend to hire one of the many private apartments or villas in one of four main island’s villages: Pomena, Sobra, Saplunara and Polace.
For visitors looking for hotel accommodation, there is a 3 stars hotel Odisej (Odysseus) located on the beach of Pomena. It is set in the National Park on Mljet Island offering a children’s pool, a beach bar and a diving center.
Hotel offers various activities like sailing, canoeing, snorkeling and diving and also organizes excursions to Korcula or Dubrovnik.
Mljet island sandy beaches
Saplunara sandy beach on the island Mljet is one of the most beautiful sandy beaches in Southern Dalmatia. Saplunara is a quiet seaside resort on the southeastern tip of the island Mljet.
It is situated in a bay about one kilometer long, enclosed by a thick forest of pine. It is known for its sandy beaches, even its name comes from the Latin word sabalum meaning tiny sand. There are two sandy beaches, Big one and Small one.
Another,according to some visitors, even more beautiful sandy beach is located some 20 minutes walking from there in the Blace Bay. Isolated and away from populated places it faces south and open sea, but still is shielded by low cliffs.
Near Saplunara sandy beach there is a private tourist settlement at the south eastern part of the island.
They offer two private accommodation unites with seven apartments for 16 persons with traditional restaurant (Dalmatian konoba) offering always fresh fish specialties and homemade wine.
From the restaurant you have beautiful view on Elaphite islands and Dubrovnik, nested in the beautiful natural rocky beach surrounded by one hundred alpine pines.