Published Date: 6th October 2022


Studying abroad in the UK has a lot of advantages, but first, you need to choose which city is best suited for your needs. Below are the best UK cities for international students with their QS Best Student Cities Ranking 2023.

  • London
  • Edinburgh
  • Manchester
  • Glasgow
  • Coventry
  • Newcastle Upon Tyne
  • Birmingham
  • Bristol
  • Nottingham
  • Leeds


Top 10 Amazing Student Cities In UK


The following information will help you decide which of these 10 UK cities is the best place to study.

1. London

London is a cultural hub and a city with many higher-education options for prospective students. Students can study at some of the country's most prestigious universities and enjoy an exciting social scene.

Best Universities in London

  • Imperial College London
  • University College London (UCL)
  • King's College London
  • The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

What Can International Students Do in London?

If you are planning to pursue higher studies in London, you will be fascinated with the nightlife of London. London has the best environment for students and people looking for a fun weekend.

Because London's transportation system is well-known worldwide, one can explore the other best cities in the UK for international students. Alternatively, you can:

  • Visit the British Museum for free
  • Visit the West End Theatre District for some entertainment,
  • Explore the world-famous Buckingham Palace
  • Camden Market offers a diverse range of cuisines.

2. Edinburgh

Edinburgh is known for the natural beauty of its surroundings, and as a student, you will love the sight of Edinburgh Castle and fabulous festivals. Above all, Edinburgh is one of the most affordable cities in the United Kingdom for students. In addition, this city is ranked 10th in the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023.

Best Universities In Edinburgh

  • The University of Edinburgh
  • Heriot-Watt University
  • Edinburgh Napier University
  • Queen Margaret University

What Can International Students Do in Edinburgh?

Being one of the best cities to study in the UK, Edinburgh has a lot for international students. Here are some of the top things students studying in Edinburgh should do.

  • Learn the ceilidh dance
  • Try neeps, tatties, and haggis at Grassmarket
  • Climb at the top of the Scott Monument
  • Visit the Royal Mile 


3. Manchester

Manchester, England's second-largest city, is known for its diverse culture, vibrant street art, exciting nightlife, and Victorian-era structures.. It ranks 25th on the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023 and has a lively nightlife.

Manchester locals are friendly, and Mancunians often interact with international students. Overall, Manchester is unquestionably one of the best cities in the UK for international students seeking higher education and career advancement.

Best Universities in Manchester

  • The University of Manchester
  • Manchester Metropolitan University
  • University of Salford
  • University of Bolton
  • Royal Northern College of Music

What Can International Students Do In Manchester?

Exploring Manchester on your own is a unique and captivating experience. Reminiscing about the great Manchester Museum, rooting for the world-famous football teams at Old Trafford, and trying the Indian curries at Wilmslow Road will fill your life with fun and entertainment. Overall, Manchester is one of the best cities in the UK for students to live in. The following are some of the things you must do in Manchester while studying:

  • Exploring the Asian-owned restaurants and supermarkets in Chinatown
  • Seeing the rarest dinosaur skeletons at Manchester Museum
  • Watching live football matches at Old Trafford
  • Shopping and having fun with friends at the Trafford center.

4. Glasgow

Glasgow, the friendliest city in the world, is full of architecturally impressive structures. Aside from being an excellent study location, students who are avid Instagrammers and social media influencers will find plenty of content to capture in Glasgow. The education system in Glasgow adheres to international standards, which is a plus for international students. Glasgow is one of the best student cities in the UK for those who enjoy music and natural beauty. In addition, like Manchester, this city is ranked 25th in the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023.

The Best Universities in Glasgow

  • University of Glasgow
  • Glasgow Caledonian University
  • University of Strathclyde
  • The Glasgow School of Art

What Can International Students Do in Glasgow?

You will find many things to do in Glasgow as the city is full of exciting attractions. Some of the exciting things you can do in Glasgow are:

  • Explore Glasgow Botanic Gardens
  • Put yourself in the shoes of a Glaswegian and visit the Drygate Brewery.
  • Visit the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
  • See the research at the Glasgow Science Centre


5. Coventry

Coventry is one of the most underrated or overlooked cities in the United Kingdom. Yes, it may come as a surprise, but Coventry is home to lush green spaces, Roman art galleries, and museums. Coventry is an excellent choice if you enjoy being surrounded by friendly people and green spaces. Coventry University is the city's largest and most well-known university, ranking #601-650 in the QS Global World Rankings 2022. In addition, according to the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023, this city is ranked 40th. As a result, Coventry has established itself as one of the best study destinations in the United Kingdom for international students.

The Best Universities in Coventry

  • Coventry University
  • Coventry College
  • University of Warwick

What Can International Students Do in Coventry?

Coventry is one of the best cities in the UK for students who want to live an adventurous life. In other words, international students will not be bored while studying in Coventry. You may:

  • Visit Coombe Abbey Park
  • Do bird-watching from Brandon Marsh Nature Reserve
  • Go to Herbert Art Gallery and Museum
  • View the oldest and most valuable aircraft at the Midland Air Museum.

6. Newcastle Upon Tyne

Newcastle, known for its industrial heritage, exciting nightlife, and eponymous brown ale, attracts hundreds of international students each year. Newcastle, without a doubt, has some of the best streets, with numerous art galleries, museums, street markets, pubs, clubs, theatres, and so on. Newcastle's universities, like those in the rest of the UK, provide high-quality education. Furthermore, according to the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023, this city is ranked 42nd.

Best Universities in Newcastle

  • Newcastle University
  • University of Newcastle
  • Durham University
  • Keele University

What Can International Students Do in Newcastle?

Apart from studying, while living in Newcastle, you can do the following:

  • Explore the historical Tyne Bridges
  • Visit Newcastle’s historical castle
  • Meet up with friends and go to the Millennium Bridge.
  • Go shopping at Eldon Square


7. Birmingham

Birmingham is one of the most popular study abroad destinations for international students. Birmingham, also known as the "home of heavy metal," attracts thousands of international students yearly. Birmingham is one of the best cities in the UK to study in because it combines modernity and British culture, as well as its high-quality education system. In addition, according to the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023, this city is ranked 45th.

Best Universities in Birmingham

  • University of Birmingham
  • Aston University
  • Birmingham City University
  • Newman University

What Can International Students Do in Birmingham?

As an international student, you will spend most of your time after university exploring Birmingham. If you plan to study in Birmingham, you must experience the following

  • Try the local cuisines at Michelin-starred restaurants.
  • Taste the world’s best types of coffee at Damascena Coffee House.
  • You can learn about the amazing sea life at the National Sea Life Center.
  • Have a look at more than 1,000+ iconic motorcycles at National Motorcycle Museum.
  • Catch the Shakespeare Express and explore the city center of Birmingham.

8. Bristol

Bristol is a city in southwest England on the River Avon with a prosperous and unique maritime history. The city has a population of 686,000 people, an average international fee of USD 30,500, and is ranked 102nd in terms of affordability. In addition, according to the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023, this city is ranked 49th. As a result, international students can look into some of the country's top universities to further their education.

Best Universities in Bristol

  • University of Bristol
  • The University of West of England
  • Bristol Filton College

What Can International Students Do in Bristol?

It has the best and brightest student community. It is a vibrant city with live music, art scenes, exciting places to eat, etc. The harbor's 19th-century warehouses contain restaurants, shops, and cultural institutions like a contemporary art gallery, The Arnolfini.



9. Nottingham

Nottingham is unique in British history because it was Robin Hood's hunting ground. Furthermore, Nottingham is the ideal blend of modernity and British culture. This is a culturally rich city with a thriving nightlife that won't break the bank. Furthermore, it is ranked 50th in the QS Best Student Cities 2023. Overall, Nottingham is an excellent choice for international students.

Best Universities in Nottingham

  • University of Nottingham
  • Nottingham Business School
  • Nottingham Trent University

What Can International Students Do in Nottingham?

International students in Nottingham are fortunate to enjoy the city's calmness and numerous tourist attractions. Nottingham University students must:

  • Explore the interiors of the Wollaton Hall
  • Visit the National Justice Museum's old-style Nottingham jail and court.
  • Visit Lord Bryon's ancestral home, Newstead Abbey, for some inspiration.
  • Explore the Green’s Windmill, built by the father of George Green, one of the most famous mathematical physicists.

10. Leeds

Leeds is ranked 10thn in the QS Best Student Cities 2023 ranking. Leeds is the county seat of West Yorkshire and home to two prestigious universities, including the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University. Leeds received the highest score in the international student view indicator this year. This indicator is based on a student survey that received responses from over 85,000 students worldwide. Furthermore, according to the QS Best Student Cities Rankings 2023, this city is ranked 56th.

Universities in Leeds

  • University of Leeds
  • Leeds Beckett University
  • Leeds Trinity University

What Can International Students Do in Leeds?

  • The city has bars and lives music under the converted railway arches
  • Kirkgate market has many indoor and outdoor stalls.

With so many great options, it is hard to choose the best one. When you arrive in these cities, you will find abundant entertainment, learning, and growth opportunities. Living in these cities will not only improve your career prospects but will also provide you with a practical understanding of how real life and the working world operate. These factors combined make these 10 student cities in UK excellent choices that can help launch you into an exciting career.



Read Also:

5 Things to Know About Higher Education in UK

Checklist Before going to Study in UK

What makes UK a Perfect Study Abroad Destination for Indian Students

About the Author:

Twinkle is an active listener and observer. She has a boundless curiosity to improvise her all-round knowledge. She is always open about her thoughts and her personality is filled with thirst for acquiring knowledge about different fields. Her favourite pastime is to pen down her thoughts and knowledge. Her strength is the simplicity of language yet being artistic.

Categories: UK

Tags: Study Abroad

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