The continuous research and improvement of ocean modelling helps to provide a more sustainable development of coastal and offshore regions. This paper focuses on ocean modelling at the NW Mediterranean using the POLCOMS-WAM model with new developments. The Stokes' drift effect on currents has been included and the distribution of surface stress between waves and currents has also been considered. The system is evaluated in the NW Mediterranean and an evaluation of different forcing terms is performed. The temperature and salinity distributions control the main patterns of the Mediterranean circulation. Currents are typically small and therefore the modification of waves due to the effect of currents is minimal. However, the wave induced currents, mainly caused by a modified wind drag due to waves, produce changes that become an important source of mass transport. POLCOMS was able to reproduce the main Mediterranean features, its coupling with WAM can be a very useful tool for ocean and wave modelling in the Mediterranean and other shelf seas. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.