Our first stop was the tiny but beautiful island of Mljet and to be honest, I think it’s one of the most stunning places that I’ve ever been to. The island has less than 1000 residents on it which makes it super quiet and peaceful. It’s essentially made up of a national park with 2 lakes, one “small” (even though it’s still huge) where you can swim, and one that is large where’s it’s far too deep to swim. We only had about 4 hours on the island where we could do activities as we arrived at 6 pm on the first day where it was a bit late to do anything and we left at about 2 pm the next day.
Note: A small entry fee is required for the national park which includes both of the lakes
We decided to do a 2.5-hour bike ride around the large lake so that we could see as much of it as possible as well as getting a swim in. We hired bikes from the entry of the large lake rather than the town so that we could walk, instead of ride up the hills to save time and have a less strenuous ride.
Note: There is one area where you are required to carry your bike up and down a set of stairs.
On the tiny island that you can see in the photo below is a monastery which we didn’t go to as we didn’t have time, but it’s something we would have done if we did. But do bear in mind that the public can no longer go inside it as they’re trying to preserve it.
Our first stop was at the mouth of the large lake where it meets the sea. We climbed down the rocks so we could swim in the crystal clear water. There isn’t any fish or sea life there (aside from sea urchins) but we whipped out our snorkels anyway.
Our last stop before leaving was at the small lake where we had a quick dip. The water was so unbelievably warm, it felt like bath water. It can even reach temperatures as warm as 30 degrees C. It’s also nice that there were very few sea urchins in this area that we had to be wary of. The water is this murky blue colour because of all the salt that’s in it so there’s no point even trying to snorkel here. There are some more “touristy” areas of the lake which we avoided hence we found this quieter spot instead.
Mljet definitely captured my heart and is one of the few islands that I’d love to go back to. It’s so peaceful, serene and detached from the other busy towns and cities of Croatia. There are some very cute restaurants along the water with delicious food, and a hotel if you’re interested in staying the night. There are also stalls that sell masks, snorkels, reef shoes, which are great for avoiding sea urchins and managing the rocky beaches of Croatia as well as a few souvenir items.
If you’re choosing a Sail Croatia route to take, DO NOT BYPASS MLJET! Just because it’s smaller, quieter and less heard of, doesn’t make it any less worthy of a visit. In fact, I think it makes it more worthy. I could easily stay here for a week where I could swim and ride around the lakes every day.
Next stop: Korcula!