Cities like Berlin, Rome, Paris and Madrid are filled with historical relevance and travellers from across the world.
Ljubljana, Slovenia is also a place with a rich history (you don’t believe me? Just check out our Castle tour stories) and totally worth exploring. However, alternative travel is something new, something unique and something that isn’t always offered in every city across the world. Ljubljana has a rich history and an amazing future in alternative travel.
There’s so much to see and do for people of all ages around the city and every day there’s a new alternative trend popping up where you’d least expect it. Think cat cafe’s, bars under bridges and graffiti paradise.
In the city of Ljubljana, there are new alternative spots popping up in every corner of the city.
Here are just a few of the awesome alternative spots and things around the area that are definitely worth adding to your Ljubljana bucket list:
This is the hottest spot in the city if you’re looking for a graffiti paradise. Metelkova is not marked on the roads, nor is it promoted by the local authorities. Metelkova Mesto is one of the largest squatters spots in Europe. What was once an abandoned army base is now a home to over 1,500 alternative (and not really legal) events each year. As you walk around the yard, your eyes won’t know where to look. You’ll find pipes built into play sets, bikes hanging off the walls and old rusty appliances made into art. There’s no telling what you’ll discover in this hidden alternative spot in Ljubljana.
The Burger Joints
There are burger joints popping up around every corner in Ljubljana and the best part about it is that it’s not your old mom and pop burger joint with the jarred pickles and heinz ketchup. These new burger joints in Ljubljana offer classy burgers with the best local and European ingredients. Here’s a couple worth checking out:
Pop’s Place - along the river’s edge and one of the highest class burger joints you’ll find in the city
Hot Horse - they have their own butchery and they really do serve up horse meat burgers
Hood Burger - this place buys their ingredients only from Slovenian producers and support local production
Craft Beer Hotspots
You find quite the variety of craft beers being brewed in Slovenia nowadays and there’s plenty of bars in the city serving up many of the local brews. Here’s just a few of my favorite:
Mali Grad: We took our first sample of Mali Grad on the river side of Ljubljana, but then headed straight to Kamnik (where the founders established the microbrewery) to try a few more versions of the Mali Grad.
Bevog: Everyone seems to know that this beer was produced only a couple short kilometres outside of Slovenia (in Austria), but it’s owned by Slovenian’s and produced in Austria simply because it can be. While the beer tastes great, their labelling is even cooler.
If you don’t know where to start, check out the local beer tours that are offered by the Ljubljana Tourism Board.
Libraries along the water
In the city of Ljubljana there are small library like spots throughout the town and along the water. These spots have an abundance of lounge chairs available (for free) to sit back and relax in the summer sun. There are also a variety of book shelves with books to read while you’re there relaxing.
In an effort to keep these hidden gems a little more hidden, I’ll leave it up to you to discover your favorite library spot in the city.
Stand Up Paddle Boarding
Or as many people like to call it “SUP’ing”.
There is a new tour in Ljubljana offered by Bananaway to explore the sights and sounds of Ljubljana in a unique (alternative) way. While I’m not sure if it’s the only city in the world, Ljubljana is definitely one of the first capitals in the world to offer travellers an opportunity to explore the city standing up on a paddle board venturing along the central river canals.
If this is something that grabs your interest, feel free to check out Bananaway Tours. They start most of their tours everyday at 10:00am, but are willing to create alternative tours for travellers with a different schedule. Every tour includes an introductory course, the full SUP equipment, a 2 hour long tour with certified instructors and some GoPro shots from the excursion.
Dragon’s Ball Party
While this isn’t held everyday, it’s a very neat example as to how open and hot the LGBT community is in Ljubljana.
In May of 2016, Ljubljana held a Pink Week in celebration of their LGBT community. To top it all off they hosted the Dragon’s Ball, a mix of trending music and visual designs from local artists and international DJ’s. The founders of Pink Week, Matej and Mattej organized the first celebration back in 2014 offering a travel package for the LGBT community to explore Slovenia. Since then, it’s been a huge success and has only continued to grow.
Excited yet? You should be!
Travel tip shared by Jenna for Travel Dudes.
The #Ljubljana trip was created and managed in association with the Ljubljana Tourism Board. Travel Dudes maintains full editorial control of the content published on this site.