Mlini, Croatia

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Last summer we spent one week in Croatia and although we planned to spend much of our time in Dubrovnik, in the end, we decided to stay away from the city and chose to book accommodation by the beach instead.

We were looking for somewhere that had a bit of history but also plenty of shopping opportunities when we came across the beautiful village of Mlini.

Where is Mlini?

Mlini is a small fishing village in Croatia, sitting halfway between Cavtat and Dubrovnik by use of the D8 highway, making it only 15 minutes away from Dubrovnik by bus which runs every half hour, making it ideal for us and gave us the best of both city and beach holiday.

Where to stay in Mlini?

We booked private accommodation at one of the gorgeous apartments on offer through Booking, in doing this, we found ourselves incredibly fortunate as the owner of the apartment offered to collect us from and also take us back to Dubrovnik airport when required. He gave us some tourist tips and information on our journey and we were even greeted with some home baking by the owner’s mother and a bottle of wine to welcome us to Mlini and Croatia. Not every experience is like this, but it was such a lovely gesture.

We also had the entire pool to ourselves, which was incredible and made it feel very VIP.

Book the same accommodation we stayed at!

Still yet to find your hotel in Mlini? We cannot recommend the place that we stayed in enough. Blazenko is an amazing host.

If for any reason, they’re not accepting bookings at this moment in time then find other fantastic options here.

Where to stay in Mlini

For us, the most inviting pictures that we saw of Mlini were the pictures of the beaches and as they stretch along the water, you could see that they differ from area to area. The section of Mlini beach closest to us was a pebble beach but it still proved to be a very popular local destination, next to a lot of cafes and further along, there is a sandy beach and further, beyond that, I believe that there is a nudist beach if you are looking to avoid dreaded tan lines.

Our So Called Life Recommends this tour from Dubrovnik

We spent quite a few afternoons by Mlini harbour, sunbathing, swimming in the turquoise blue waters and naturally, as Brits, drinking a lot of Fanta lemon and eating ice cream in the ever-beautiful Croatian weather. In the evenings we would visit one of the many restaurants or bars (we especially enjoyed Cafe Bar Gusar) overlooking the water and watch the sunsets, Mlini is a really beautiful location to relax and wind down.

Mlini Beach
Mlini Beach

Things to do in Mlini

There are many restaurant options in Mlini and fresh fish features heavily on most menus although we did have some lovely meat and vegetarian options as well, seafood was definitely prominent. Along the promenade, you will find more of the British/American style foods of burgers, pizzas and hot dogs and all restaurants are open into the late hours. Not only that, but you will find the ice cream stands and shops are open late also.

In terms of shopping, it pleasantly surprised us. Dubrovnik has a lot more of the typical tourist shopping experience, with trinkets, as you may expect but Mlini has its own sub-city shopping mall with clothes shops such as H&M, beauty stores and a supermarket which was very useful for us in self-catered accommodation.

We did not travel during the school holidays, it was early summer when we visited, so it may not have been the peak tourist season but as the weather is so warm, and the days longer, we did notice many families and local children by the beach after school hours and into the night which was really nice and really made us envious of the lifestyle that they must lead.

For those visiting the Dubrovnik Riviera, water sports are obviously a big attraction and with the clear water there is ample opportunity for snorkelling, canoeing, windsurfing, sailing and whatnot, but one of the most unexpected finds was the water polo pitch. It was very cool to see groups of people playing water polo in the evenings and especially as it is not something I have seen in person before.

A short walking distance away is what looks like an old town. I gather that Mlini was named after the mills that once featured in the village. This area was my favourite by far, it’s very picturesque with a spring running through it, an old church and stone pebble buildings.

Cat waits by fisherman in Mlini

Take a trip to Lokrum

Another option is to hop on one of the water ferries buses to visit Dubrovnik’s old town or as we did, Lokrum Island which is absolutely beautiful, forested and filled with many wildlife, interesting history and although we have never seen it, Game of Thrones was filmed in and about Lokrum. This seemed a popular destination for those looking to visit a park and have lunch, picnics, workout or go to the popular saltwater swimming spot named ‘Dead Sea’.


Our So Called Life Recommends this tour to explore Lokrum Island!

Dead Sea

One more thing, and it’s perhaps for the strange like me who are somewhat enamoured with abandoned buildings, it’s one of those Youtube black holes I often fall into. The nearby village of Kupari has a full bay of abandoned hotels which were used as a military resort and just along from another popular tourist destination, Kupari Beach. These empty buildings lie with bullet and shell holes, leaving a stark reminder of the damage that comes with war. A war that was as recent as the 90s, so we’re not talking about a lifetime (to most) ago. It was absolutely fascinating and haunting to see.

We both thoroughly enjoyed our holiday to Mlini and are so glad that we chose to stay out of Dubrovnik and experience, although nearby, another area in Croatia.

It is definitely a village that I would return to and one that I would highly recommend for those with families or for those looking for a slower-paced holiday as it could be considered a sleepy town.

There are plenty of activities to keep young children and those that are a little older occupied while also being close to and having access to other areas such as Dubrovnik, Lokrum Island and the Elaphiti Islands at very reasonable costs.

Book activities to take near Mlini


  1. Thanks for replying Peter

    However the new link isn’t working for me. What was the name of the apartments please and I will search on Internet?

  2. Hi Lauren, We are traveling to Croatia in May and staying in Mlini also. Your posting certainly gets me excited! You mentioned you went to Lokrum. Were you able to take a boat from Mlini to get there? I have only found boats from Dubrovnik. Could you share what boat you took? cost?
    We are sure to stop at Gusar’s but can you recommend a place you ate at?
    Thanks for helping me!

    1. Hi Beth, Very jealous! I’d love to go back. We managed to get a boat that almost acts like a bus and stops at Lokrum on the way. I think it may have been this one? Can’t remember the cost as it was a few years ago now that we visited. There was also a fee to get onto the Island if I remember rightly too.
      We had a nice beachfront meal on one of our nights, I think it may have been at Bistro Oleander. Things may have changed since we were last in Mlini, so you may be best to do some research based on recent reviews on Google just to make sure we’re not recommending anywhere that potentially has gone a bit downhill since the pandemic. 🙂

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