November 6, 2020 – Three solar-powered boats, completely made in Croatia, can be found sailing on the Mljet lakes.
“They are great because we can show how we care for Croatian production at the National Park, but above all, about protecting nature because they are boats that emit zero pollution,” said the director of the Mljet National Park, Ivan Sršen, for HRT.
“All three ships bear the names of our people who died in the Homeland War.”
These boats can sail for 5 hours at a speed of 5 knots. While they can reach 9 knots, that speed is not necessary to sail on the lake. If there are days without sun, the boats can be connected electrically, though Sršen claims they haven’t needed to so far.
Mljet National Park, the oldest protected marine area in the Mediterranean, is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. The magical island of Odysseus is known for the phenomenon of salty Mljet lakes and a 400-year-old coral reef.
“The magical island of Odysseus is known for the phenomenon of the salty Mljet lakes because they are connected to the open sea by the Solin channel and every 6 hours, based on the tides, the sea enters the lakes, and every 6 hours, it leaves the lake and creates this current under the big and small bridge,” explains the head of the Department for Tourism and Promotion of NP Mljet, Diana Dabelić
Mljet’s underwater world is enchanting, boasting coral that stretches over 650 square meters. It is 300-400 years old.
“It is famous because it is full of life. The biodiversity is great, a real natural phenomenon,” said Petar Kružić from the Faculty of Science in Zagreb.
“Grouper breeds in the Great Lake, 90 percent of the groupers we have on Mljet breed in the Great Lake. Larger fish also come here,” points out Kružić.
This year, only 25% of last year’s tourist traffic was realized at Mljet NP, but crowds are not a priority here.
Diana Dabelić added that it was important that visitors who came to the oldest marine protected area are firstly satisfied with the service provided.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, there will be no grand 60th birthday celebration for Mljet National Park. However, the implementation of several projects financed by European funds is underway.
You can watch the full video about the magical world of Mljet on HRT.
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