Nestled amidst the mesmerising turquoise shores and covered in a layer of lush green forest, Mljet Island stands as an undeniable gem in the Adriatic, often hailed as the “green pearl” of the region.
Situated close to the famous town of Dubrovnik and neighbouring islands like Korcula, Mljet offers a calming escape from the bustling crowds, offering an authentic Croatian experience.
The island is best known for its stunning National Park which was established in 1960, (becoming Croatia’s first protected marine area).
Beyond its stunning landscapes, Mljet boasts a vibrant ecosystem and a surprising claim to fame – its delectable goat’s cheese.
For those with an affinity for adventure, hiking, breathtaking panoramas, green vistas, and mouthwatering cuisine, Mljet Island is a haven waiting to be explored.
I wholeheartedly recommend Mljet as a destination worth exploring if you’re looking for an unforgettable, unique experience that will leave you wanting more.
So, what are the best things to do in Mljet? Read on below to find out!
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The best things to do in Mljet outside of Mljet National Park
Saplunara Beach has to be one of the most impressive spots on Mljet Island.
This beach is a secluded gem, best known for its soft, golden sands and crystal-clear turquoise waters.
Saplunara Beach boasts calm, shallow waters which is perfect for chilled-out swims and family-friendly fun.
The beach is surrounded by a lush green pine forest which is home to a few short trails.
So, if you get tired of the beach (which I highly doubt you will) you can pop on your shoes and go for a leisurely stroll.
In terms of facilities, there is a small, lively restaurant located by the beach, a supermarket and free parking.
You can also purchase a sunbed for around €8 for the day, however, this is not a necessity as there is plenty of space to lay down your towel or pop up a deck chair.
Aside from the national park, Saplunara is one of the best things to do in Mljet. If you plan on driving I would recommend getting there early to ensure you get a spot.
Blace Beach (Limuni Bay)
Just southeast of Saplunara lies Blace Beach.
Much like Saplunara, It is a serene sandy retreat surrounded by a lush pine forest,
The shallow waters make it ideal for small children and non-swimmers.
Umbrellas and lounge chairs are available for rent and there is also a beach cafe close by for those all-important snacks.
One of the coolest places to visit in Mljet has to be Odysseus’ Cave
Legend has it that Odysseus (the Greek King of Ithica) spent 7 years living in a cave on Mljet after a storm caused his boat to crash on the Mljet coast.
Whether you’re a lover of Greek myths and legends or simply someone who appreciates natural beauty, then a trip to Odysseus Cave is for you!
To get here you will need to head to Tommy’s Supermarket, where you will find a small car parking area.
Close to this, you will see a signpost for the cave, where you can follow the route for roughly 20-25 minutes before reaching the cliffside.
As you approach the end of the trail you will see a small cliffside bar called Mars which is an awesome place to hang out and grab some refreshments.
You’ll then see a large area of cliff where you’ll find plenty of space to pop your belongings whilst you venture into the cave.
Accessing the cave involves diving (cliff jumping) into the water and navigating through the rocks.
For those who prefer a gentler approach, you can use the rope and steps provided to ease your way in for a more controlled entrance.
It is said that if you visit at noon, the sunlight directly into the hole of the cave, allowing you to see the cave, and the clear water in all its glory.
However, I think it’s not the best time to come. Midday tends to draw larger crowds (for this reason) and also not forgetting that it’s when the sun is at its hottest (which isn’t great for hiking).
I suggest coming later in the day, after 3 PM. It’s cooler, and there will be fewer people around.
Prožurska Luka, is a charming coastal town located in the North of the island.
Nestled in a scenic bay, with fishing boats dotting along the water it provides a tranquil retreat away from tourist crowds.
Here you can relish in leisurely waterfront walks and delicious Croatian food at some of the local restaurants scattered across the bay.
And, what’s more impressive than the village itself, is the view you get of the coast as you descend into the village – For the photographers among us this is a great photo opportunity.
Sutmiholjska Beach can be found in a small bay found in between the towns of Ropa and Babino Polje.
Sutmiholjska is a pebble beach that is home to impressive turquoise waters.
The calm waters found here make it a great spot for leisurely swims and even a spot for snorkelling.
The one downside to this beach however was the sheer amount of litter we came across here. It’s hard to tell whether this is from inconsiderate people using the beach, or whether the bay is a trap for ocean litter to wash up on shore.
Either way, it’s a great shame as the beach itself is beautiful.
Just a short distance from Prožurska Luka you can find the equally charming fishing village of Okuklje.
Here you can enjoy refreshing spots to swim in, relax in the sun, enjoy nature and even go on a hike.
Or, if you’re feeling peckish you can enjoy a spot of lunch at some of the restaurants you can find here.
If you’re looking for a calm and inviting place to visit in Mljet that’s perfect for chilling out and exploring then Okuklje is it.
The best things to do in Mljet inside of Mljet National Park
To enter Mjlet National Park you will need to pay a fee.
The entrance fees for the National Park Mljet are as follows:
Adults – 25 Euros
Children (8-18 years) – 8 Euros
Children (0-7 years) – free
NOTE: The ticket includes access to two lakes and the boat ride to the Benedictine Monastery.
Tickets can be bought in offices in Pomena and Polače or pre-booked online here.
*Please note if you plan to visit Mljet National Park during the off-season you will need to make prior arrangements. Click here to find out more.
Undeniably one of the best things to do in Mljet is to visit the two enchanting lakes inside the national park.
The lakes are known as Veliko Jezero (large lake) and Malo Jezero (small lake).
The large lake boasts a deep ocean blue hue, while my personal favourite, the small lake, shimmers with a vibrant turquoise colour.
Both lakes offer the unique experience of buoyancy due to the high salt levels in the water.
For a more intimate swim, I recommend steering clear of designated swimming spots and discovering your own secluded area amidst the trees.
This way, you can enjoy having the entire place to yourself, adding a touch of calm to your time by the lakeside.
Kayak on the lakes
One of the most unique ways to explore Mljet National Park is by hiring out a Canoe or Kayak to venture through the lakes.
You will find lots of places to rent out canoes and kayaks dotted around the national park, however, the best place to grab one is in the area of Mali Most.
Kayak/canoe rentals start from €25.
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For a breathtaking 360° view of the National Park, consider hiking up Mount Montokuc.
The hike is well-marked, and locals or guides are available for assistance. The round trip is approximately 3-4 kilometres, taking around 1.5 hours.
Another option is Mount Veliki Gradac, starting at the same car park and ticket stand.
You can combine it with the Montokuc hike or do it separately.
If you have time for only one hike, I recommend sticking with Mount Montokuc for an incredible experience and seriously impressive views.
This hike is one of the best things to do in Mljet so do not skip it!
The Church and Benedictine Monastery on St Mary’s Island
St Mary’s Island is a small island located in the middle of Veliko Jezero (a large lake).
You can come here to explore the old church and have a bite to eat at the island restaurant.
The island is tiny so you won’t need much time here and thankfully boats come to and from the island regularly.
The boat transfer is also included in the cost of your entry ticket.
Pomena is a cosy town on the western side of Mljet Island. It is the gateway to Mljet National Park, known for its lush landscapes and pristine surroundings.
The town has a picturesque harbour where you can see fishing boats in the clear Adriatic Sea.
Pomena is a peaceful place with nice walks by the water, friendly cafes, and a laid-back vibe.
It’s also one of the best places to catch the ferry to and from Mljet.
Looking for more Euro inspiration? Check out my other guides here!
Is Mljet worth visiting?
I personally believe that Mljet is one of the most beautiful islands in Croatia if not Europe.
It is still often missed off the traditional tourist trail which means it’s retained some of that untouched magic and charm, which is often missing from many of the islands in Croatia.
If you are looking for something unique to do on your Croatia holiday then a trip to Mljet is it.
How to get to Mljet Island
The only way to get to Mljet Island is by ferry/catamaran. You can get a catamaran directly to Mljet from Split, Hvar, Brac, Korcula, Lastovo, Sipan & Dubrovnik.
Please bear this in mind when booking a ferry or catamaran service, as only certain services will stop at certain ports (see below).
The G&V Line will take you to the ports of Sobra and Polace and the journey time is roughly an hour. Please be aware that in the winter month, this will only stop in Sobra.
The Kapetan Luka service will take you to Pomena only and runs from late May to mid-October.
You can compare ferry schedules and prices here.
How to get around Mljet Island
By Bike (day trip)
If you’re planning a day trip to Mljet Island to explore the National Park, consider exploring it on foot or by bike.
You can easily rent a bike or an e-bike from one of the rental companies inside the National Park as soon as you disembark the catamaran.
Long Stay (CAR)
For an extended stay on Mljet Island, the best way to explore is by car, allowing you to venture beyond the National Park and discover other beautiful spots the island offers.
You can rent a car from Mini Brum with rates starting at just €50 per day.
Their main office is conveniently located next to the ferry port in Sobra, and if you’re heading to Polace ferry port, you can arrange for a rental pick-up there.
It’s worth noting that some cars may be on the older side; my boyfriend and I got a Fiat 600, giving us a nostalgic 90’s holiday feel – it did make the experience more memorable though
*Please bear in mind cars are not allowed within the vicinity of Pomena.
If you can’t drive, there are a couple of bus routes on the island that stop at major places. Keep in mind that the bus service isn’t very frequent, so plan your journey accordingly.
Another option is using taxi services available on the island; some even provide tours of Mljet.
This can be a good choice for those without a car who don’t want to use the bus, but it tends to be a bit more expensive.
Can you stay on Mljet Island?
Can you do a Day trip to Mljet Island?
Doing a day trip to Mljet is super common, especially for those staying in Dubrovnik.
You can either book a same-day return ferry and explore the national park by yourself, or you can book a guided tour which will give you access to more islands during the trip.
Is Mljet worth staying on?
While it’s possible to visit Mljet Island just for the day and explore the National Park, I strongly suggest staying for at least a couple of nights.
The island has a wealth of beauty both within and beyond the National Park, and I wouldn’t want you to miss out on experiencing it!
Where are the best places to Stay in Mljet Island?
Considering their proximity to scenic spots, as well as bars and restaurants, I strongly recommend choosing accommodations in any of the following locations:
Can you Camp on Mljet Island?
There are approximately 3 campsites in Mljet:
Camping prices start from around €10.
How long should you stay in Mljet?
Whilst you probably won’t want to leave, I recommend staying a minimum of 3 nights in Mljet.
This will give you the chance to explore both in and outside of the national park, without feeling rushed.
Best places to eat in Mljet Island
What I love about the island is that most of the restaurants in Mljet serve traditional Croatian cuisine and LOTS of fresh seafood.
Some of the best traditional restaurants in Mljet include:
Can you swim in Mljet National Park?
Yes you can swim in Mljet National Park.
You can swim in both Veliko Jezero (Big Lake) and Malo Jezero (Small Lake).
Both lakes are good for a relaxed swim as the water is usually calm and safe for everyone.
There are specific areas in the lakes marked for swimming, so you can enjoy the water safely.
What is Mljet known for?
Aside from its famous national park, Mljet is also best known for its olives, goat’s cheese and white and red wine.
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I hope you have the best time uncovering all of the best things to do in Mljet.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to reach out.