Erratic engineeress

A personal blog fuelled by caffeine and curiosity.

Ljubljana: where to eat, drink and party

I’ve lived in Ljubljana for most of my life and have probably tried every cafe, bar and restaurant worth knowing (frequently updated).

Since I had way too much to share about my home city in the Ljubljana travel guide post, I had to make a separate post just for recommendations on where to eat, drink and party.

Ljubljana cafescape

To start off, if I had to choose amongst all the cafes, I would recommend:

  • Slovenska hiša: traditional Slovenian food and lovely drinks for relatively decent prices for what you get
  • the artsy Pritličje cafe/bar with a nice atmosphere and a good selection of drinks
  • Le Petit cafe, a cosy cafe with French food
  • cafe Čokl, where they roast their own delicious coffee and are very eco-conscious
  • Cukrarna cafe, which is part of a modern art gallery
  • Špica cafe next to Ljubljanica river for the summer months

Three of my absolute favourite cafes have recently closed, so I am still looking for proper replacements and I’ll let you know when I find them. As for the best treats, there is Cafe Romeo with the rhubarb and cream pancakes (extremely worth it, although the rest of the food is normal and overpriced), Vigo and Cacao for ice cream (usually pretty crowded), Emazing creations for gorgeous cakes and sweets, Sister Kurtoš for a giant kurtoš, a doughy spiral Hungarian pastry filled with various pretty toppings and Pri vodnjaku, where you’ll get an ice cream hill surrounded by a hot chocolate moat. There is also Makalonca, which is located on a pontoon on the river, so the setting is amazing, but the prices are extortive for Slovenian standards and I wouldn’t really recommend it unless you don’t care about spending too much money.

Where to eat

There are plenty of eating options, both the usual and exotic, so I will not even attempt to go too deep into that – I’ll just list some of my current favourites in and around the city centre instead:

There are plenty of food trucks and small eateries around the Central market as well, where they host the Open kitchen food festival every Friday during the warmer months. It also pays off to take a look at the list from Teden restavracij (restaurant week), a culinary project where critically acclaimed, fancier restaurants offer a promotional 3 or more course menu for a fixed price twice a year. They usually select great restaurants to participate and you can check out some of my reviews here.

Where to drink

In terms of evening drinks, there are several classy bars like Dvorni wine bar, which I do not tend to visit often, Kolibri cocktail bar for proper fancy cocktails and Nabrežje 15 for Instagramable cocktails. I can also recommend some nice pubs:

There is also Pr’ Semaforju, which sells the cheapest beer available and is usually full of drunk students. Daktari and Nostalgia cafe are also open in the evening and are a bit classier with a vintage vibe.

Where to party

Ljubljana also a healthy party scene. As I am not one for crowded fancy clubs, I cannot really recommend any that I would call good, but there are the many venues of Metelkova city for something a bit more alternative, as well as Orto bar and the K4 club. Since I’ve spent so many evenings there, I also cannot neglect to mention the Pub pod Skalco, out of gratitude, if nothing else. It is a bit of a hole in the wall, even after the renovation, so expect horrible Balkan music, a dark and a bit smelly venue with cheap alcohol, but that is precisely what makes it fun, because sometimes you just need to drop your IQ a bit. Pub pod Skalco is now closed, but it deserves to be immortalized in this post and I haven’t found a good replacement yet. I also quite like the Prulček bar, which frequently hosts concerts. Cvetličarna often hosts various dance all-nighters and Studio Dansa has swing social dance nights on Fridays that we used to go to a lot. For other specific dancing events, see here.

You can find all the places I mentioned marked on my free personal Google Maps saved places list for easy access, just see the points marked around Ljubljana (get my list here). Obviously, there are many more venues and eateries, but let this be enough to help you get your bearings on where to eat, drink and party in Ljubljana.

Feel free to ask me for more recommendations in the comments! 🙂

Last update: June 2023.

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