MUST READ – Where to stay in Ljubljana (2019)

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Ljubljana is one of the most underrated cities in Europe. A rich history, vibrant culture, and an up-and-coming culinary scene, Ljubljana is absolutely one of Europe’s best-kept secrets.

But Ljubljana is a small city, and not all of its neighbourhoods have a lot to offer visitors. That’s why we wrote this insider’s guide for where to stay in Ljubljana.

Written by travellers for travellers, our article breaks down Ljubljana’s best neighbourhoods by interest. Our easy to digest categories will make it easy for you to figure out exactly where you want to stay in the Slovenian capital.

Whether you’re looking for the hottest clubs or coolest culture – you’ve come to the right place!

Here are our top picks for where to stay in Ljubljana.

 

Quick Tips – Where to Stay in Ljubljana

  • Where to stay in Ljubljana first time – Old Town
  • Where to stay in Ljubljana on a budget – Trnovo
  • Best area to stay in Ljubljana for nightlife – City Centre
  • Coolest place to stay in Ljubljana – Metelkova
  • Best neighbourhood in Ljubljana for families – Koseze

 

In a hurry? Here’s my top neighborhood for first timers:

Old Town
Located at the centre of Ljubljana is Old Town. Nestled between the Ljubljanica River and the Ljubljana Castle, this medieval part of the city is characterized by its narrow cobblestone streets, winding alleyways, traditional architecture and charming restaurants.
Places to Visit:
  • Stop by and pay tribute to Hercules at the Herkulov vodnjak
  • Prepared to be amazed by the colourful and intricate interiors of the Ljubljana Cathedral
  • Ride the funicular to the top of the hill and enjoy the views along the way

 

Where to Stay in Ljubljana

Looking for a specific place to stay? These are our highest recommendations for places to stay in Ljubljana.

 

Best Hostel in Ljubljana: Hostel Vrba

Hostel Vrba is our choice for the best hostel in Ljubljana. Set in Trnovo in the centre of the city, this hostel is close to restaurants, bars and Ljubljana’s top attractions.

It has private and shared accommodation options, and there are free coffee and tea, laundry facilities, and a relaxing common room.

View on HostelWorld

 

Best Airbnb in Ljubljana: Home Marked with the Best View In Town!

If you don’t mind walking up a flight of stairs — 4 to be exact, the room is worth the steps though rest assured you get what you put in. With one of the best views in Ljubljana, you can see the river and castle, just a window away. The best part is the stairs up to the loft bedroom. Anything with stairs feels magical when you’re traveling, you just never knowing where it may lead to. One last thing that stands out is the chance to wash your clothes; the apartment includes a washer you are free to use!

View on Airbnb

 

Best Hotel in Ljubljana: Art hotel Ljubljana

Art hotel Ljubljana is our favourite hotel in Ljubljana. Set in the City Centre, this is a stylish and modern three-star hotel. It is close to bars, restaurants, shopping, and famous landmarks.

The rooms are comfortable and spacious, and each is outfitted with a range of great amenities.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

Ljubljana Neighborhood Guide

Quick Summary: The Best Places to Stay in Ljubljana

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Old Town

  • Located at the centre of Ljubljana is Old Town. Nestled between the Ljubljanica River and the Ljubljana Castle, this medieval part of the city is characterized by its narrow cobblestone streets, winding alleyways, traditional architecture and charming restaurants.
Check Top HostelCheck Top AirbnbCheck Top Hotel
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Trnovo

  • Trnovo is a trendy neighbourhood just south of Ljubljana’s city centre. A popular gathering place for students and young adults, this neighbourhood is brimming with bars and restaurants, cafes and clubs.
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City Centre

  • In addition to its central location, Ljubljana’s City Centre is perfect for night owls and party animals. Boasting the best nightlife in the city, this downtown neighbourhood is bursting with a vibrant atmosphere, lively bars, and exciting clubs.
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Metelkova

  • Metelkova is far and away one of the coolest neighbourhoods in Ljubljana. Located north of the city centre, Metelkova is an alternative cultural centre that attracts artists and performers from throughout Slovenia and Europe.
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Koseze

  • Located west of the city centre, Koseze is a beautiful and charming neighbourhood. It is a short 15-minute bike ride from Ljubljana Castle, and this is where you can enjoy all the benefits of being in the city without the hustle, bustle and chaos.
Check Top HostelCheck Top AirbnbCheck Top Hotel

 

Ljubljana is a city that is quickly rising in the ranks as one of the coolest travel destinations in Europe.

The capital and largest city in Slovenia, it is a charming city brimming with artists, museums, galleries and restaurants. Here you’ll find everything from stunning architecture and ancient castles to expansive green spaces and luscious lands.

Home to just 300,000 people, Ljubljana is one of the smallest capital cities in Europe. It is divided into 17 administrative districts, each further subdivided into distinct and diverse neighbourhoods.

This guide will highlight Ljubljana’s “must-sees” broken down by interest.

The heart, soul and centre of Ljubljana are the City Centre and Old Town neighbourhoods. Divided by the Ljubljanica River, these neighbourhoods are where you’ll find the majority of the city’s top attractions, including the Ljubljana Castle and the Dragon Bridge.

This is also where you’ll find great restaurants, trendy bars, excellent shopping and a myriad of incredible sights.

To the north of the city centre is Metelkova. An autonomous community centre, Metelkova is a vibrant and exciting neighbourhood that is home to artists, designers and performers.

Here you’ll find the streets awash with colourful street art and countless bars selling cheap and delicious drinks and food.

Travel south of the city centre and you’ll find yourself in Trnovo. A sprawling and massive neighbourhood, Trnovo is teeming with cafes and bars, as well as green spaces and parks. Popular with students and young people, this neighbourhood is an ideal destination day or night.

West of the city centre is the beautiful neighbourhood of Koseze. A great mix of excitement and relaxation, Koseze is where you can enjoy all the perks of the city without the hustle and bustle.

Still not sure where to stay in Ljubljana? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!

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 5 Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Ljubljana

Let’s take a look, in more detail, at the five best neighbourhoods in Ljubljana. Each is a little different than the last, so be sure to check which neighbourhood is the best fit for you!

 

1. Old Town – Best Place to Stay in Ljubljana for First-Timers

Located at the centre of Ljubljana is Old Town. Nestled between the Ljubljanica River and the Ljubljana Castle, this medieval part of the city is characterized by its narrow cobblestone streets, winding alleyways, traditional architecture and charming restaurants.

The most famous neighbourhood in the city, Old Town is where you’ll find many of Ljubljana’s most famous landmarks. From the Dragon Bridge to Robba Fountain, this part of the city is packed with unique tourist attractions.

If you’re keen to try traditional Slovenian food, look no further. This compact neighbourhood is teeming with eateries and cafes serving up the very best Slovenian dishes and delights!

Old Town, Ljubljana

 

Things to See and Do in Old Town

– Explore Ljubljana Castle, a stunning medieval fortress that has great views out over the river and city.

– Stop by and pay tribute to Hercules at the Herkulov vodnjak.

– See Robbov vodnjak. Also known as the Fountain of Three Carniolan Rivers, Robba Fountain is one of the city’s best-known Baroque monuments.

– Prepared to be amazed by the colourful and intricate interiors of the Ljubljana Cathedral.

– Cross the iconic Dragon Bridge, and snap the perfect pic for the ‘gram by its impressive statues.

– Enjoy an incredible meal at STRELEC Restaurant, where the views are almost as good as the food!

– Dine on modern cuisine at Julija.

– Dance the night away at the exciting and lively Pritli?je.

– Ride the funicular to the top of the hill and enjoy the views along the way.

 

Best Hostel in Old Town: Hostel 24

Located less than one kilometre from the centre of the city, you won’t find better budget accommodations in Old Town than Hostel 24. It has a welcoming and friendly atmosphere. Towels, linens, maps and even slippers are available to guests. There is also a kitchen, book exchange and a comfortable common room.

View on HostelWorld

 

Best Airbnb in Old Town: Home Marked with the Best View In Town!

If you don’t mind walking up a flight of stairs — 4 to be exact, the room is worth the steps though rest assured you get what you put in. With one of the best views in Ljubljana, you can see the river and castle, just a window away. The best part is the stairs up to the loft bedroom. Anything with stairs feels magical when you’re traveling, you just never knowing where it may lead to. One last thing that stands out is the chance to wash your clothes; the apartment includes a washer you are free to use!

View on Airbnb

 

Best Hotel in Old Town: Hotel Emonec

Hotel Emonec is located in the centre of Ljubljana. It is a stone’s throw from the castle, restaurants, cafes and museums. Charming and cosy, this hotel has an on-site restaurant, tour desk, and laundry facilities for guests.

The rooms are spacious, outfitted with modern amenities, and have private bathrooms.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

Best Hotel in Old Town: Vander Urbani Resort

Vander Urbani is a stylish and atmospheric hotel – and our choice for where to stay in Old Town. Located a short distance from Ljubljana Castle, this four-star property is close to restaurants, bars and popular nightclubs.

It has an on-site fitness centre, a rooftop terrace and a relaxing sauna.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

2. Trnovo – Best Place to Stay in Ljubljana on a Budget

Trnovo is a trendy neighbourhood just south of Ljubljana’s city centre. A popular gathering place for students and young adults, this neighbourhood is brimming with bars and restaurants, cafes and clubs.

Here you’ll also find lush green spaces and charming parks, perfect for a relaxing afternoon of sunshine, stunning views, and idyllic strolls.

This massive Ljubljana neighbourhood is also your best bet when searching for budget accommodations. Scattered throughout this district are a great selection of budget hotels and backpacker hostels. From cheap and charming to modern and stylish, this neighbourhood is where you’ll get the best bang for your buck.

Trnovo, Ljubljana

source: Jean-Pierre Dalbéra (Flickr)

 

Things to See and Do in Trnovo

– Sip on a cup of freshly roasted coffee at Mala Prazarna.

– See the remains of the city’s Roman walls at Rimski zid na Mirju.

– Cross the Trnovo Bridge, famous for its impressive width and tree-lined walkway.

– Take a relaxing and peaceful stroll along the Ljubljanica River on the Trnovski pristan walkway.

– Grab a drink at Sax Pub, a Ljubljana institution popular for its vibrant and colourful graffiti-covered façade.

– Enjoy a cup of coffee as you browse the vintage museum pieces decorating Nostalgija Vintage Cafe.

– Dance until dawn to the city’s best DJs at Cirkus Club.

 

Best Hostel in Trnovo: Hostel Vrba

Hostel Vrba is our choice for the best hostel in Ljubljana. Set in the centre of the city, this hostel is close to restaurants, bars and Ljubljana’s top attractions. It has private and shared accommodation options.

There are free coffee and tea, laundry facilities, and a relaxing common room.

View on HostelWorld

 

Best Airbnb in Trnovo: Entire Home in Central Location

Looking for a spacious place to call home for the weekend on your travels? This place feels like a home away from home with an outside terrace and pool table. With so much to offer for such a small price, you won’t believe you an stay here for so little. It’s truly the ideal home for couples, but there’s room for small families to stay here as well. When you are ready to get out of the house, you can take an 8-minute walk and find yourself at the main city square and archeological park.

View on Airbnb

 

Best Hotel in Trnovo: Dimora Karlovska

Enjoy a stay in a traditional Slovenian apartment at Dimora Karlovska. Located in Trnovo, this two-room attic apartment is cosy and quaint. It has all the basic necessities required for a great stay in the city.

This property is close to Ljubljana Cathedral, Dragon Bridge, and the area’s top bars and restaurants.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

Best Hotel in Trnovo: Sport Hotel Ljubljana

Sport Hotel Ljubljana is our top recommendation for where to stay in Trnovo. Located outside of the city centre, all of Ljubljana’s top landmarks and attractions are easily accessible by car, bike or bus.

This comfortable hotel has a swimming pool, playground, and an in-house bar. It also offers a great range of modern amenities.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

3. City Centre – Best Place to Stay in Ljubljana for Nightlife

In addition to its central location, Ljubljana’s City Centre is perfect for night owls and party animals. Boasting the best nightlife in the city, this downtown neighbourhood is bursting with a vibrant atmosphere, lively bars, and exciting clubs.

Here you’ll find a tonne of places to meet new people, enjoy a cocktail and dance the night away.

But there’s more to the city centre than just bars and clubs. This district is teeming with museums, art galleries, shops and boutiques.

Whether you’re looking to pick up a new piece for your closet or art for your walls, there’s plenty to see, do – and shop for – in the city centre.

City Centre, Ljubljana

 

Things to See and Do in City Centre

– Enjoy a cold pint at Premier Pub.

– Sink your teeth into a delicious burger at Centralna Postaja.

– Dine on innovative dishes and classics with a twist at Žmauc.

– Listen to great music and enjoy a drink (or two) at Cutty Sark Pub.

– Down a good ol’ pint at Patrick’s Irish Pub, where the atmosphere is good and there’s a variety of beers on tap.

– See incredible views from the rooftop terrace of Skyscraper.

– View prehistoric artefacts at the National Museum of Slovenia.

– Challenge a friend (or stranger) to a rousing game of beer pong at Shooters Club.

 

Best Hostel in City Centre: Fluxus Hostel

This colourful and cosy hostel is located in the heart of the city. It is a short walk from Ljubljana’s top attractions and there are many eateries, clubs, bars and cafes nearby.

Fluxus Hostel has laundry facilities, an outdoor terrace, and a welcoming common room. There’s even a relaxing steam room!

View on HostelWorld

 

Best Airbnb in City Centre: Renovated Apartment in the Hustle and Bustle

Directly below the castle is this beautiful apartment residing just about 50 meters from the public transportation, centrally located next to the bars and nightlife of the city, making it especially easy for you to stumble back home safely after a night out. Or conveniently and freely take one of the bikes the home offers to guests and explore the river walk. It’s a simple, clean apartment for a couple traveling but can comfortably sleep a third party with the futon bed from Ikea that’s just as heavenly as the bed is.

View on Airbnb

 

Best Hotel in City Centre: Art hotel Ljubljana

Art hotel Ljubljana is a stylish and modern three-star hotel. It is close to bars, restaurants, shopping, and famous landmarks. The rooms are comfortable and spacious, and each is outfitted with a range of great amenities.

This is our best recommendation for where to stay in the City Centre.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

Best Hotel in City Centre: Urban Hotel Ljubljana

This fashionable four-star hotel is perfect for your time in Ljubljana. Set in the City Centre, the Urban Hotel Ljubljana is close to the city’s top restaurants, bars and tourist attractions. It boasts air-conditioned rooms and cable/satellite TV.

Guests can enjoy a range of features at this great downtown hotel.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

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4. Metelkova – Coolest Neighborhood in Ljubljana

Metelkova is far and away one of the coolest neighbourhoods in Ljubljana. Located north of the city centre, Metelkova is an alternative cultural centre that attracts artists and performers from throughout Slovenia and Europe.

Built on the site of the former headquarters of the Army of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Yugoslav National Army, Metelkova is a self-declared autonomous community.

It covers an area of 12,500 square meters, and today is filled with underground clubs and galleries, as well as bars and restaurants selling cheap food and drinks.

Wander throughout the seven buildings that make up Metelkova and see incredible examples of colourful street art, and public art exhibitions, as well as concerts, performances and engaging activities.

Metelkova, Ljubljana

source: plastique (shutterstock)

 

Things to See and Do in Metelkova

– Listen to great rock and metal music at Orto Bar, one of the biggest clubs in Ljubljana.

– Dance the night away at K4, a massive club that plays everything from techno and house to drum, bass and beyond.

– See incredible works of modern art at the Museum of Contemporary Art Metelkova | +MSUM.

– View interesting exhibits that explore the link between past and present cultures and traditions at the Slovenian Ethnographic Museum.

– Enjoy great Slovenian food at reasonable prices at Das ist Valter.

– Dine on everything from delicious pizza to fresh salads at Utrip – bar, bistro, kavarna.

 

Best Hostel in Metelkova: Hostel Celica

Hostel Celica is located north of the city centre in Metelkova. It is just steps from the hottest clubs and coolest bars in the city. Built in an old military prison, this hostel is bursting with character and atmosphere. It has a common room, kitchen and outdoor terrace.

View on HostelWorld

 

Best Airbnb in Metelkova: Vintage Home in Center

This has got to be the funkiest room in Slovenia. For the redbull fans, they got you stocked for the time you will be staying in the random wall fridge. The home is full of places to sleep as well, with its big comfy L shaped couch and bed set up for two people you can fall asleep anywhere peacefully. Not to mention the colorful chair accompanied by the vintage blue fridge that is actually made from a 60s VW van!

View on Airbnb

 

Best Hotel in Metelkova: Hotel Meksiko

Hotel Meksiko is a comfortable and contemporary three-star hotel in the Metelkova neighbourhood. A short walk from the city centre, this hotel is close to the city’s trendiest bars and liveliest clubs. Rooms have modern décor, free wifi and comfortable beds. There’s also an on-site bar and restaurant.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

Best Hotel in Metelkova: Hotel Asteria Ljubljana

Quirky and colourful, Hotel Asteria Ljubljana is a great base for your time in the city. Located north of the city centre, this three-star property is close to the train station and is a short walk to Ljubljana’s top attractions. It has an outdoor terrace and relaxing garden.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

5. Koseze – Best Place to Stay in Ljubljana for Families

Koseze is our best recommendation for where to stay in Ljubljana if you’re travelling as a family.

Located west of the city centre, Koseze is a beautiful and charming neighbourhood. It is a short 15-minute bike ride from Ljubljana Castle, and this is where you can enjoy all the benefits of being in the city without the hustle, bustle and chaos.

Surrounded by nature, Koseze is one of the most relaxing neighbourhoods in Ljubljana. It’s a popular destination for visitors and locals alike thanks to its network of walking trails, lush natural scenery and the delightful Koseze pond.

Here you’ll also find a great variety of family-friendly activities and attractions, including Ljubljana zoo and fun mini golf.

Koseze Ljubljana

source: DancingPhilosopher (Wikicommons)

 

Things to See and Do in Koseze

– Explore the lush and expansive Tivoli Park.

– Play a fun round of 18 holes at Mini Golf Café.

– See your favourite animals, including red pandas, cheetahs, giraffes and hundreds of others at the Ljubljana Zoo.

– Climb to the top of Roznik Hill and enjoy great views in serene nature.

– Go for a walk – or if visiting in winter, a skate – around Koseze Pond, a man-made pond at the centre of the neighbourhood.

– Catch a game and cheer on your favourite team at Lepa Žoga, a fantastic and family-friendly sports bar.

– Enjoy an incredible meal at Pomaranca.

– Sip and sample Slovenian specialities at Gostilna Pri Vodniku.

 

Best Hostel in Koseze: Aladin Hostel

The Aladin Hostel is a colourful and welcoming family-friendly hostel in Koseze. It is close to Tivoli park and is a short transit ride from the city centre. It has free wifi, a game room, on-site bicycle rentals, and laundry facilities. There’s also a bar, café and mini-supermarket.

View on HostelWorld

 

Best Airbnb in Koseze: Complete Home with Huge Balcony

Yet again, another home with epic views in the city of Koseze. Full of light is this private apartment on the 7th floor. You will find youself with a 360 view of the city and fall asleep on the king-size bed with the plushest blanket and pillows to give you the best sleep you can have in this buzzing city. With a sofa bed in addition to space, you can bring the kids along with you on this mini vaca.

View on Airbnb

 

Best Hotel in Koseze: M Hotel Ljubljana

M Hotel Ljubljana is a stylish and modern four-star hotel – and our top pick for where to stay in Koseze. Recently renovated, this hotel boasts comfortable and spacious rooms, each outfitted with a private bathroom, free wifi and wonderful amenities.

There is a sun-soaked terrace, an on-site bar, and a breakfast buffet.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

Best Hotel in Koseze: Aparthotel Vila Minka Ljubljana

Tennis courts, a bowling alley, and a range of outdoor activities, Vila Minka is a property packed with family-friendly fun! Located in Koseze, each apartment is outfitted with a kitchenette, free wifi, and a range of modern amenities.

There’s also an on-site restaurant and stylish lounge bar.

View on Booking.com     View on HotelsCombined

 

Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Ljubljana

Ljubljana is undoubtedly one of the most underrated cities in Europe. This compact capital city is bursting with incredible landmarks, exquisite art, exciting bars and delicious cuisine. Whether you’re a history buff or a culture vulture, there’s something for everyone in Slovenia’s capital city.

Just to recap; Metelkova is our number one choice for the coolest neighbourhood in Ljubljana. Eclectic and electric, there’s always something fun and exciting going on in this alternative downtown neighbourhood.

The Art hotel Ljubljana is our best recommendation for where to stay in Ljubljana. Stylish and modern, this three-star hotel is ideally located in the city centre close to the best bars, restaurants, shops and sights. If you’re on a budget, our vote for best hostel goes to Hostel Vrba.

Have we missed anything? Let us know in the comments below.

Don’t forget to sort your travel insurance! We’ve put together a roundup of the best travel insurance for backpackers – check it out here, or if you’re low on time, get a quote from World Nomads now, our favourite travel insurance provider.

 

Do you own an awesome hostel, hotel or apartment? Want to be featured in our list? Email hostels@thebrokebackpacker.com to find out how.

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