When in Ljubljana the other weekend, among the many surprising things I discovered about the city was the fact that the city is home to more than a few abandoned spaces and plenty of street art and graffiti. The Metelkova district, a former army barracks and art squat, has been a popular destination for street artists since it was taken over by artists in the ’90s. These days, Metelkova is home to Ljubljana’s most unique hostel (a former prison!) and the city’s best nightlife—and still plenty of squatters and artists in the mix, too.

Another popular place in Ljubljana where you can find not just street art, but other art events and creative undertakings, is at the former bike factory Rog. The former factory once produced Yugoslavia’s most popular bicycle, the Rog “pony.” Since 2006, the factory has been turned into a public art space and cultural center. The center isn’t in the best condition, though, as it’s still very much an abandoned space. So exploring this area should be done with caution (as a sign at the entrance rather ominously points out).

All-in-all, Ljubljana’s surprisingly cool atmosphere comes not from the countless street art, but the creative ambiance that seems to permeate everything that happens in the city. Even the city’s public parks put on seemingly underground special events. Park Tabor, not far from Metelkova, even had a chalk-written sign listing the various events that would be happening there over the course of the week. While I wasn’t able to make it to any of the public events in Park Tabor, the idea that they’re advertising on the side of an electrical box with chalk, just made me feel the city was all the more “underground.”

Walking through the city and exploring the little streets, you can’t help but feel that there’s a creative energy in Ljubljana. Maybe it’s that history with the dragons. Or its long history and relatively recent independence. Or maybe it’s just because this city is oh-so-cool. Ljubljana is not just charming — there’s a definite oomph to the city. The people are friendly (oh-so-friendly!), the beer is sweet, the food is tasty and the street art is quirky. Ljubljana has its very own special style.

Where to Find Street Art in Ljubljana

Want to know where to find some of Ljubljana’s street art? Besides wandering aimlessly by bike or on foot, make sure you hit up these three places:

  • Metelkova — Former army barracks, now a cultural center and nightlife hotspot
  • Rog — Former bicycle factory, now cultural center with regular events (check their calendar)
  • Trubarjeva Cesta — This shopping street and the little alleyways on either side of it are full of cool shops, great cheap restaurants and lots of graffiti

32 Photos of Ljubljana’s Street Art

From typical spray-painted words, to colorful murals and quirky paste-ups, Ljubljana’s street art provides a peek into the creative vibe of the city. Check it out yourself below:

Ljubljana Street Art
Ljubljana’s most hipster cafe is also one of the best places for coffee. (Go figure!) Visit BiKoFe on this little alleyway in central Ljubljana.
Ljubljana Street Art
Yes, that’s a door int he middle of the street — part of an outdoor art exhibition.
Ljubljana Street Art - Hipster Jew
Cute :) Hipster Jew
Ljubljana Street Art
Doors are not immune to street art in Ljubljana
Ljubljana Street Art
As are the sidewalks.
Ljubljana Street Art
Some of the street art was sad.
Ljubljana Street Art
But mostly it was happy — and colorful!
Ljubljana Street Art
And sometimes stylish #hipster
Ljubljana Street Art
Some street art had attitude
Ljubljana Street Art
And in Metelkova, most of the street art was your typical stylish street murals
Ljubljana Street Art
On every wall…
Ljubljana Street Art
Awkward, much?
Ljubljana Street Art
In Metelkova, there are no bare walls or buildings.
Ljubljana Street Art
Public art or something useful?
Ljubljana Street Art
Street art was everywhere in Ljubljana
Ljubljana Street Art - Metelkova
I don’t know what any of this is, but it all looks fun.
Ljubljana Street Art - Metelkova
A political statement in Metelkova
Ljubljana Street Art
Do you spot something?
Ljubljana Street Art
Public spaces for creative use!
Ljubljana Street Art
Sidewalk street art
Ljubljana Street Art
Just a bit scary, no?
Ljubljana Street Art
Trubarjeva Cesta street had umbrellas and shoes hanging overhead, between the buildings – it added an extra layer of style to the already hip street
Ljubljana Street Art
Hmmm
Ljubljana Street Art
That’s some proper graffiti
Ljubljana Street Art - Rog
In Rog – Be who you are
Ljubljana Street Art - Rog
Abandoned Rog Factory
Ljubljana Street Art - Rog
More of the abandoned Rog factory
Ljubljana Street Art - Rog
Art can be made out of anything
Ljubljana Street Art - Rog
Rog!
Ljubljana Street Art
Not street art, but this building’s colorful architecture (and triangular shape) caught my attention.
Ljubljana Street Art
Well, isn’t that sweet?
Ljubljana Street Art
I’m not sure if this is graffiti or advertising…

Note: I visited Ljubljana as part of a blog project supported by Visit Ljubljana and The Travel Mob. Read more about #TasteLjubljana here.

Please note some posts do make me some money but I never sacrifice my integrity in exchange for a favorable review. Read the full disclosure policy.

13 comments

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  1. Pingback: Where Should I Travel to? #5 | Backpack or Suitcase

  2. The Radio Turk piece commemorates a festival of a local urban internet radio, which me and my friend hosted. All the guests in the radio which was a more or less weekly thing performed on the festival in the club just next to the piece. We’re really glad you put the piece in your blog. Thanks mate.

    • Hey Tim – Thanks for sharing your story about the street art I photographed – really cool of you to find it here and share the story about it.

      Thanks!

      • Tim

        Yeah no worries.

  3. Ljubljana looks like a very artistic city. Every nook and cranny has colors and imagination. Nicely photographed!

    • Thanks Renuka! I loved Ljubljana because every little corner of the city was surprising – and almost always in a very positive way!

  4. Some great (and also kinda weird) pictures! I love to see street art like these. Great article, I really enjoy reading your blog. I’ve never been to Ljubljana but maybe some day I have the opportunity to go there :)

    • Hi Jonas – thanks for the compliments! Agreed that some of the art is weird but I think that’s what gives Ljubljana its quirky edge :)

  5. This is so far the best post I’ve ever seen about Ljubljana! I’ve been there three times but a while ago and back then I had no idea about Metelkova (until reading your post Metelkova was the only street art place in Ljubljana I’ve heard of). I’m planning to revisit the city in the near futurew so I’m bookmarking this post as it’ll definitely be useful in my street art hunts :)

    • Glad to hear it Kami! There’s a lot of cool stuff to find in Ljubljana. Metelkova is quite popular so make sure you check out Rog as well – that’s definitely a bit more “underground.”

  6. What fun, to find a place filled with street art around (quite literally) every corner.

    • It was hard to miss in Ljubljana!

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