Green island of Mljet, situated in the southern part of the Adriatic sea, is well known for its rich cultural and natural heritage, dense Mediterranean vegetation and transparent and clear sea with great variety of sea life. The island is known as one of the last habitat of monk seal as well – the rare and endangered sea mammal which unfortunately does not exist in the Adriatic sea any more.
Since the medieval ages, our island has been well known for it’s exceptional products: goat cheese, vine and honey after which it was named (Melita and Meleda are ancient names for Mljet, both coming from the word mel – honey).
Today, many lovers of the authentic nature discover this island in their escape from the urban life.
Mljet is 35 km long, and inhabited with less than 1000 souls who live in the 15 villages completely in harmony with nature. Their main occupations are fishing, agriculture and tourism. Settlements are connected with a road which extends from the National Park in the northwestern part to the Saplunara bay at the southeastern most part of the island.
The Mediterranean climate, characterized with mild winter and hot summer, makes that many trees blossom in the autumn and even in the winter. And the all-year round green pine trees make this island look so green. The rich vegetation of the island, especially in the area of the national Park, explains why Mljet is also known as the Green Island.
Come and check by yourself why island of Mljet is among ten most beautiful islands of the world according to the Time magazine
The Croatia’s oldest National Park in the Adriatic is located in the northwestern part of the island. The main phenomenons of the Park are salty lakes, which consist of three parts – Big Lake, Small Lake and the Soline channel. The lakes are a unique geological and oceanographic phenomenon of worldwide importance.
The lakes are surrounded with hills, covered with dense vegetation. The trees of beautiful, rich pine forests gently descend all the way to the surface of the lakes, thus creating an image of unspoiled nature.
The path all around the lakes is excellent for walking or cycling, as well as the numerous paths through woods, always in a shadow, so even in a summer it is not too hot to take a trekking route.
The Park is known also for it’s rich cultural and historical heritage. The best preserved one is the Benediction monastery and the church of St. Mary on the little island in the middle of the Big Lake, dating from the 12th century. Another important monument is ruins of Roman palace probably from the 2nd century and two basilicas nearby the palace from the early Christian period.
Each of these elements together makes a perfect harmony, which resulted in proclamation of the National Park on 11th November 1960.
The island’s past recalls Odyssey and his nymph Calypso, the apostle Paul, the poet Opian, the Roman Emperor Augustus, the German military leader Odoakar and his “comes domesticorum” Pierius, the ancient Illyrians, the Croatian-Slavic inhabitation of the island and their battles with the Roman army, the Dubrovnik nobles who ruled over the island, as did the Abbots of St. Mary and later, the Venetian knights, the fall of the Dubrovnik Republic, the arrival of Napoleon’s army and the English war ships…