The best cities for street art – chosen by travel bloggers, part 3
(Last Updated On: 13/05/2020)
New Year seems like the best day to plan some new adventures! I asked couple of fellow travel bloggers what are their favorite street art cities and they told me their choices. Some answers surprised me, some cities are already in my plans for this year, some are on my wishlist. If you are a fan of street art as much as I am you might consider these places as your possible travel destinations for 2015. And if you’re looking for more inspirations for urban adventure check part one and two of best cities for street art posts!
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I was pleasantly surprised on my visit to Bristol, in the west of England, to find that the city’s biggest plus is its street art. You can barely walk 100 metres through the city centre without stumbling across an interesting lane way full of art or a whole side of a building covered in one giant mural. And because this is where famous street artist Banksy hails from, you’re guaranteed to be impressed with the quality.
If you are in Malaysia, Penang is not only and excellent place to try a huge variety of street food but also an amazing array of street art. The pictures are mainly tradition style showing life in colonial Penang. There is a map available though the Tourism Office also online. To walk the area will take you a day giving you the chance to sample local food along the way.
Sarajevo’s street art scene is dominated by a French artist widely known as Monsieur Chat. He started to create his artworks in Sarajevo in 2005 and, after numerous visits, his street art creations are clearly visible around city center. His creations are simple – represent a yellow cat – but the meaning differs depending on the place he’s currently in. The cat below is surrounded by roses which are symbol of the war and Sarajevo’s siege (1992-1995). After the siege Sarajevians started to fill the holes made by mortar shells’ explosions with red paint what resembled roses.
Jogja, the heart of Java island is a place where many artists live. Its’s bustling with culture and art, both traditional and modern. You will find murals here at every corner. Some of them are really unique, including i.e. characters of traditional Javanese theatre.
I love Santa Barbara’s Funk Zone for colorful street are that reflects California’s beach culture and Spanish/Mexican heritage. It’s also become a great are for wine tasting and dining and best of all you can walk from one tasting room to the next.
Valencia, the third largest city in Spain, is a great place to visit and not just to marvel at street art, but also to take a look at its beautiful Gothic cathedral, walk through the UNESCO listed Silk Exchange market, take some photos of the futuristic City of Arts and Sciences complex and stroll around the city’s stunning medieval winding streets. Urban art, however, is something that cannot go unnoticed in Valencia and beautiful graffiti pieces wonderfully contrast with typically Spanish Gothic and Modernist architecture. Check out my post on Valencia’s street art to see more fabulous examples
Boise, USA by Josh and Liz from Peanuts or Pretzels
During a recent trip to Boise, Idaho, were were surprised to come across a colorful alley in the downtown area. Taking a walk down this “Graffiti Alley” in Boise you will find colorful and creative murals that stretch from building to building (such as this one). While the entire city center is bustling around it, this quiet alley seems to be hidden from the crowds. It’s really cool to see that the city has embraced street art in Graffiti Alley, and we hope that they continue to add to the collection of artwork in the future.
I particularly like this graffiti located in Barrio Cofico (where I lived for a while) because of it’s location. You can see this huge art from four corners of the park and its colours are so full of life it’s hard to not notice it. On the lower part of the graffiti, you can see a very poetic Spanish phrase which says, “A los que resisten por su raiz, su tierra y cultivan la valoracion de todas las especies” which literally translates to “Those who resist his roots, his land and cultivate the valuation of all species.” I believe street artists in South America are genuine and true to their art though the majority of what I’ve seen relates to the political issues of the country. This is their way of expressing their thoughts.
Beirut, Lebanon by Anwar from Beyond My Front Door
Beirut has an incredible diverse amount of street art, in several old and new neighborhoods. I was astounded by all the artwork I saw around messages of peace, and beauty, and friendship. I think after so many years of conflict it is one of the ways of trying to deal with those issues.
Have you been to any of these cities? Which piece do you like the more? What’s the best street art destination to you?
If you want to read more about the street art and my great finds around the world check out more posts about it!
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