Abandoned: 21 Photos From Ljubljana’s Oldest Pool

Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 02

This is the Kopališče Kolezija, the oldest swimming pool facility in Ljubljana, Slovenia’s capital. Located southwest of the city center, a public pool has been in this area since at least 1879. It probably hasn’t always been this colorful, making it a fitting inauguration for a new and occasional urban exploration photo series.

[Update 16 May 2014: The pool and entire facility is no more. I rode by earlier today and watched it all being bulldozed, leaving me very glad that I made these photos when I did. For posterity’s sake a few pics of the destruction are at the end of the post.]

The facility underwent several upgrades and renovations, both before and after the second world war, through the early 1970s. An ownership dispute forced its closure in 2000. In 2009 the City of Ljubljana solicited bids from architects for another overhaul. A winning bid was selected but nothing has progressed since, leaving the facilty a popular hangout for skaters, graffiti artists, drunks and the occasional junkie.

20 More photos below and a detailed history is here from a Radio Slovenia program transcript (Slovene only). These were all taken with my mobile phone, a Samsung Galaxy S3; one day I’ll return with my DSLR.

Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 10 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 06 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 07 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 08 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 09 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 05 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 04 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 03 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 11 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 14 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 18 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 19 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 15 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 16 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 12 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 13 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 17 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 20 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 21 Abandoned Ljubljana Pool 01

Update 16 May 2014 – I briefly watched the entire facility being bulldozed today. Here are a few shots of the bulldozers in action.

Bulldozers at Ljubljana's Kolezija pool - May 2014
Bulldozers at Ljubljana’s Kolezija pool – May 2014
Bulldozed Kolezija pool facility in Ljubljana
Bulldozed Kolezija pool facility in Ljubljana – May 2014
Bulldozing Ljubljana's Kolezija pool - May 2014
Bulldozing Ljubljana’s Kolezija pool – May 2014



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  1. Are there several old outdoors swimmingpools in Ljubljana Bob?
    I used to visit one as a young girl with my parents. The last time by myself in 1975 when I travelled trough Europe by train (by “InterRail” we called it in Norway).
    It’s a big sport-center near the Tivoli Park – but it’s not this one I remember.

    1. You porbably remember Ilirija swimmingpool, wich is also closed for some time now. Sadly almost abandoned.

      1. let me correct you. ilirija pool is open every summer from 1929. swimming club ilirija is taking care of it…you are welcome to visit.

  2. I love abandon places…this one still looks well loved if not in the same manner it was intended. Love the details of the graffiti – they stir quite a few emotions.

  3. Yes, I know this is not in Tivoli. But is this pool in the Vic-area the only outdoor pool in Lj.? Or is it only the oldest one?

  4. I really love this post, and this place… I’d love to get in there with my camera and explore! Even taken with your phone, these pictures are incredible. I’ve always been fascinated by urban exploration.

  5. There is no junkies. And place was runned by some yung people after it was abondent. inside the pool skaters build seweral skateparks but lokal goverment “cleaned” place seweral times and destroyed 6 -7 skateparks. Some gelles huligans olso burned a place 10 year ago. Adn i think during 2006-2007 there was the ony skatepark in ljubljana. But we are old and hawe other project and occupations.
    this is video of unfinished skatepark second befor end.

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