Location: Rakuševa ulica 1
Begin your adventure following the trail of modernist architecture and literature at one of Šiška’s most modern buildings. When designing the fascinating façade of the new Aleja shopping centre, the architect was inspired by none other than the famous Ljubljana Dragon.
Leave your car here and, like a true Šiškar, get on your bike or rent one at the BicikeLJ station for an authentic city experience.
And now ride quickly on your way past the Šiška Library to Adamičeva Ulica and towards the Koseze Market.
2. Adamičeva Ulica
Cycle along the tree-lined road and feel the pulse of residential Šiška hailing from the modernist era, when housing estates and blocks of flats were designed to include plenty green surfaces and playgrounds dotted among buildings. Stop by the monument commemorating cyclists who fell in the National Liberation Struggle, relax along one-way streets, and continue towards the Koseze Market.
3. Koseze Market
Location: Vodnikova cesta 187
Make a pit stop to enjoy your morning coffee and observe the lively bargaining that takes place in the market.
Take in the colourful scenery of the market on Saturday mornings and buy some local products yourself. Like a true local connoisseur, stop by the market stand selling lettuce from Savlje, try some goat cheese from Poljanska Dolina and sample some home-made yoghurt from the foot of Šmarna Gora. Take all the time you need. Soaking up the sun and chatting with passers-by is all part of the authentic market experience.
Hop back on your bike and ride along Koseška Cesta to Ulica Bratov Učakar.
4. Passing through the Koseze terraced block complex
It’s time to explore the narrow alleys among the terraced blocks of Koseze. Keep an eye out for retro blocks of flats and their terraces. The blocks are sloping and narrower towards the top. This unique modernist architecture is enlivened by strips of greenery and walkways that lead all the way to the entrances. Because the traffic runs along the edges of this residential area, you can explore the interesting streets in their peaceful and green surroundings without a care in the world.
Continue along Podutiška Cesta.
5. Christ the Saviour Church in Koseze
Location: Podutiška cesta 20
You’ll notice the new, taller church in Koseze from afar. Look to its right, where its predecessor, another example of the modernist legacy in Šiška, still reigns supreme. Peek inside or walk around on the square connecting the old and the new church to admire the fascinating shapes and compositions designed by the architect Anton Bitenc.
Continue along Draga and Koseška Cesta towards the Koseze Pond. Can you smell the clean air and trees already?
6. Koseze Beach
It’s time to stop and breathe a little. The Koseze Pond is a place where you can see swans, listen to birdsong and compete in frog-spotting, all in the shade provided by black alder and willow trees. Perhaps you’ll see a local fisherman proudly exclaim upon successfully catching a carp. This is where you can sit and enjoy the lovely green ambience. Those who are ready for another shot of caffeine or need something sweet to fuel further exploration just need to go a bit further and visit the Lokus Café.
Continue along Koseška Cesta – Večna Pot – Matjanova Pot – Pod Hribom.
7. Štalca pri Vodniku
Location: Vodnikova cesta 65
All are welcome at Greta’s for stories, jokes and chatter. Not to mention the authentic home-made fare she’ll bring to your table.
If there’s one thing you should try in this timeless restaurant, make sure it’s the house specialty, veal as Vodnik’s grandmother used to prepare it, with potatoes that are first boiled and then roughly mashed and fried with onion, made following the original recipe from Vodnik’s Kuharske Bukve cookbook, which dates back to 1799. As for dessert, rely on the legendary waitress Greti to advise you, she’ll help you make a great choice.
And now cross the road and head over to Vodnik’s home.
8. Vodnik Homestead, house of reading, writing and storytelling
Location: Vodnikova cesta 65
This house of reading, writing and storytelling is a centre for all those who love nothing more than to curl up with a book under a blanket. Vodnik Homestead is ideal for gathering, reading, talking and lengthy discussions on all things literary. You might even be temped to try your hand at writing.
Longer version: You can continue your walk along Vodnikova Cesta and go down the stone steps all the way to the Old Church, i.e. St. Bartholomew’s Church. This masterpiece by the architect Jože Plečnik has a semi-circular opening in the roof above the main entrance. Can you guess why? So that the lime tree next to the church could continue to grow. This is how sensitive to nature this giant of Slovenian architecture was. The church is brimming with history and stories, and is worth the slight detour you’ll need to visit it. After viewing the church, stick to the main road in Šiška, Celovška Cesta, which will lead you to Kino Šiška.
Shorter version: Continue your walk down Vodnikova Ulica – Na Jami – Derčeva Ulica until you reach Kino Šiška.
9. Kino Šiška Centre for Urban Culture, a living room with sound
Location: Trg prekomorskih brigad 3
At which point should you leave Derčeva Ulica? Once you see the giant graffito on your right, you’ll know you’ve reached the Kino Šiška Centre for Urban Culture – a living room with sound.
At Café Kino Šiška, coffee is usually enjoyed in the mornings and beer in the afternoons. The lounge is open to everyone. You can have a beer in the plaza in front of Kino Šiška or in the lobby, where you can sink into a retro couch or Rex chairs, created by Niko Kralj, the legendary Slovenian designer.
There’s always a Toilet Queue in Kino Šiška. Have a look at the murals in the downstairs restroom facilities, you won’t regret taking the time. If you get the chance, take a peek into the Katedrala Hall or the Komuna Hall, the two favourite concert venues of Šiškars.
Did you manage to find the iconic Space Invader in front of Kino Šiška yet? If not, quickly circle the building again!
Your next stop is not far from Kino Šiška...
10. Computer History Museum
Location: Celovška cesta 111
Do you remember the very first browser, Netscape? Do you still know how to play Tetris? Visit the Computer History Museum and explore the first computers, early computer games, and how the World Wide Web once looked. You might even chance upon a fascinating exhibition about the development of computers and technology, a round-table discussion or a programming workshop.
11. Department Store of the Communal Centre in Šiška
Notice the linear design of the department store, which used to be part of Šiška’s former town planning layout. This is another ambassador of Šiška’s modernist architecture that follows the lines of Celovška Cesta. Created by the architect Miloš Bonča, the transparent ground floor of the edifice enables a flow through the space and provides views of the square in front of Kino Šiška. Despite the slightly inadequate refurbishing of half of the building, a stop by this important piece of architectural legacy is a must.
12. Photon Gallery – Centre for Contemporary Photography
Location: Trg prekomorskih brigad 1
Welcome to a hub for all artists working in the field of contemporary photography and video arts in Central and South-East Europe. Explore the delights of the bookshop and reading room. If you love photography, then guided tours of exhibitions are something you must experience. Who wouldn’t want to exchange observations with the authors themselves? If you’re lucky, you might be in town during the Photonic Moments biennial festival, which presents various forms of authorial photography and videos.
And now let’s pop over to the neighbours!
13. P74 Gallery
Location: Trg prekomorskih brigad 1
Enter the most important exhibition space for contemporary art in Ljubljana. P74 Gallery is famous for its distinctly conceptual direction and understanding of young authors. If you’re an explorer and creator by heart, this is the right place for you. This is the home of experimenting That encompasses everything from improvised music and sound exploration, to experimental sound projects. There’s absolutely no doubt that this gallery, which coexists harmoniously with its surroundings, will delight you.
It’s time to lose yourself among the blocks of flats and streets and feel the real Šiška vibe. Step boldly through the most popular underpass in Ljubljana.
14. Underpass beneath Celovška Cesta next to Kino Šiška
Location: Underpass beneath Celovška Cesta next to Kino Šiška
There’s only one right way leading to and from Kino Šiška. Prepare to be greeted by a burst of colour and lively motifs on the walls of the underpass beneath Celovška Cesta that’s a canvas for graffiti artists. One of Ljubljana’s 17 official graffiti locations, this is a popular creative spot for many of the city’s street artists and the famous graffiti crew from Šiška, 1107 Klan, whose name comes from Šiška’s postal code.
15. Free-styling it around the streets of Šiška
Ride with the locals or race along Celovška Cesta all the way to the last stop of this circular route experience, the LPP office building, or even make free-style detours among the blocks of flats and courtyards. Your route might bring you to the Church of St. Francis of Assisi, or you might end up in front of the Gimnazija Šiška secondary school, or even in front of the Embassy of Romania.
Streets for orientation purposes: Celovška Cesta – Kettejeva Ulica – Runkova / Kebetova / Majde Vrhovnikove / Smrekarjeva Ulica – Hotmirova Ulica – Gorazdova Ulica
16. LPP office building
Well done, you’ve reached the end of the walk! Today, you experienced Šiška like a true Šiškar.
You’re standing at the last stop – the iconic depot of the LPP company (LPP means Ljubljana Passenger Transport), which has been here ever since 1931, when it was used to park trams.
Next to it there’s Hotel One66, which used to be a workers’ hostel. This is a great stop for delicious pizzas and burgers at Dobra Vila. Alternatively, you can continue down Celovška Cesta until you reach the Aleja shopping centre. On your way back, you won’t be able to miss the Celovška Twins, as the two highest residential tower complexes in Slovenia have been nicknamed.