Pomena is a lovely little harbour on the northern end of Mljet Island and lies within the Mljet National Park boundaries. Only a short sail from Korcula, it’s a popular hangout for local boats and charter yachts as well as playing host to a large number of hotel boats, trip boats and tour groups wanting to access the National Park. So it can be a very lively place at times.
Quite a few local yacht races also start and finish here so be warned Pomena can get very busy in the summer season and unlike Polace it lacks the room for everyone to spread out so be prepared to snuggle up!
The village itself is compact but contains all the services you would expect including an ATM, small supermarket and bakeries.
There is also an ample selection of restaurants to choose from and some have their own quays with lazy lines. Once you have made your selection the owners will help you in.
The town quay is very expensive at 40 kuna/m (August 2015), power and water extra. If you go stern-to you get a 30% discount and if you use your own anchor it is a 50% discount. When I was there I never saw anyone use their own anchor, not even the locals, so this may indicate that the bottom is foul and the extra discount offered does not offset the cost of a diver if required!
If you are looking for a cheaper, and potentially quieter option, a nice alternative is to long-line back to the Island of Pomestak (directly opposite the mouth of the harbour). As long as you have the appropriate National Park entrance ticket there appears to be no charge to stay here. Note: Pomestak Island has a designated FKK beach meaning nudism is allowed. That being said there are plenty of other beaches around Pomena to choose from and it is only a short easy 15 minute walk to Malo Jezero; one of the two saltwater lakes located in the national park if you fancy a warmer swim.
Pomena is one of two gateways to the Mljet National Park. The other being Polace. Mljet National Park is a MUST DO of any sailing holiday in the Southern Dalmation sailing area.
The north western end of Mljet was made into a national park in 1960 and consists of over 5000ha of Aleppo pine and holm oak forest. Within its boundaries lie two salt water lakes (Veliko/Large and Malo/Small Jezero/Lake).
The island of St Marija, located in Veliko Jezero, is home to a very picturesque 12 century Benedictine monastery which can reached by trip boat or kayak. It is only a 15 minute easy stroll from Pomena to the trip boat landing stage or you can take the small mini bus. The cost of the bus is included in the price of your park admission ticket – what a bonus! The trip boat may (it did when we were there in August 2015) or may not be included in the park ticket but either way it only amounts to about 20 kuna and is well worth it.
If you want to, you can also rent bikes and traverse the islands many cycling and walking trails or access the trip boats this way. The boat trips take you between Veliko and Malo Jezero and out to the monastery.
Mljet National Park represents some of the best value entertainment in the whole of southern Dalmatia. Admission tickets to Mljet National Park cost only 80 kuna per person per day (2015). You are expected to buy your ticket at the kiosk located near the head of the harbour. National Park staff do come out to yachts anchored to check tickets, as do staff in the park at various points along trails. A ticket can last up to 7 days for the same price as one so if you want to stay longer than one night either in Polace or Pomena, make sure you indicate this when purchasing otherwise you might be stung for a subsequent nights. One ticket covers both Pomena and Polace.
If you only want to make one walk, try the lakeside walk around Malo Jezero. It is an easy 15 minute stroll over a low hill from Pomena to the lake itself where there is a picnic area and bike/kayak rental stand. From here there is a low level road/track that encircles lake. It doesn’t take long to put the madding crowds of day trippers behind you as they seem to congregate at the junction of the two lakes. The two lakes are connected by a canal with a bridge over it. The route around the lake takes about 1 hour.