Top 10 cities in the UK for international students

Top 10 cities in the UK for international students

Top 10 cities in the UK for international students
Tn Aryal

While studying abroad may appear stress-free and easy, living alone in a completely unfamiliar environment can sometimes be problematic. So, you must pick the best possible place and university. 

The UK is one of the most sought-after student destinations thanks to the British education system, employment opportunities, safety, diverse culture and overall beauty.

The British education sector enjoys a high reputation and is well-known worldwide. Most UK universities offer hands-on programs to meet industry needs, whereas most undergraduate programs are provided with placement years. 

Moreover, the UK is a cost-effective destination to study Bachelor's degrees are offered in three years, and Master's degrees are offered in one year. The UK cities are known for their 

All the cities and towns in the UK offer unique environments to study.

Nevertheless, some students live in busy places such as London, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Newcastle, and Leeds. Some other students also prefer to stay in university towns such as Loughborough, Lancaster, Oxford, Cambridge, St Andrews, Exeter, etc.   

The best student cities in the UK can be based on factors like universities, living expenses, desirability, job opportunities, safety, etc. 

This guide will provide you with the 10 top cities in the UK for international students. 


London has often been ranked top of the world's best student cities list. It is also seen as a country with over 20 universities on the world's best list. 

It is acknowledged worldwide for its diversity, career opportunities, top universities with affordable tuition fees and unique lifestyle. 

London ranks first in the list of the most suitable cities for students. It is a fusion of cultures, with people from all over the world living in London to experience the proper British way of life. 

Students can pick from great disciplines like business, law, social science, engineering, etc. London is one of the top destinations for students willing to study MBA. 

London has excellent shops, including new local grocery stores and boutiques selling fashionable and exciting clothing. Portobello, The Road, Covent Garden, and Camden Lock Market are significant shopping areas. London has many attractions and activities, from Big Ben and Buckingham Palace to hundreds of free museums and events. 

Besides the sites and attractions, London's diverse population makes it more interesting.

London is one of the finest cities in the world, and rightly so for international students who will get a taste of a global world. The only disadvantage is that it is also one of the most expensive cities in the world. 

Fortunately, there are many ways to live cheaply in London as a student.  From using student discounts for travelling on the underground and overground to knowing which areas are more affordable for London student accommodation, you can manage your expenses in London. 

Moreover, more part-time job opportunities pay better international students. 

 Some highly distinguished universities located in the city of London are below: 

  1. University College London
  2. Imperial College London
  3. King’s College London  
  4. Middlesex University 
  5. Queen Mary University


Edinburgh is one of Scotland's most significant cities and a jackpot regarding its desirability for international students. Why? 

Edinburgh is home to some of the best universities, and its academics stand out. Additionally, Edinburgh offers copious internship opportunities, job opportunities and networking scenarios for students worldwide. 

The capital of Scotland is known for its history, charm, and high standard of living. Students can participate in major annual events such as Edinburgh International Festival and Hogmanay New Year’s Street Party. 

Edinburgh is also quite affordable thanks to the comparatively affordable rent, accommodations and other living expenses. 

The University of Edinburgh is the most well-known institution in the city and ranks in the top five universities in the UK and the top 20 in the world (QS World University Rankings 2021). 

Here are some famous universities of Edinburgh which make it further appealing to the students. 

  1. University of Edinburgh
  2. Heriot-Watt University
  3. Edinburgh Napier University
  4. University Of St. Andrews
  5. Abertay University


With over 100,000 students, Manchester is undoubtedly one of the best student cities in the UK. 

Manchester is often regarded as England's "Northern Capital" and is frequently considered the "Best Student City”. 

It is a young and vibrant city known for its influence on industry, music, and sports histories. 

With its unique culture and beauty, Manchester has been earning popularity as an overseas study destination for international students searching for authentic and diverse experiences lacking back home. 

Other than the highest-ranked universities, Manchester is also a cheaper UK city to live in, thus increasing its prospects amongst students.

These universities are the most chosen by home students as well as international students:

  1. University Of Manchester
  2. University Of Bolton 
  3. University Of Central Lancashire-UCLan
  4. University Of Salford
  5. Lancaster University


Glasgow is a bustling city with vibrant life and first-class educational facilities.  It is a hub of culture, entertainment, arts, and education and ranks among the top 5 cities in the UK in terms of education and standard of living. 

Thanks to the top universities in Glasgow and its affordability amongst students, Glasgow is quickly growing as the best student city. 

It is home to top-notch universities such as the University of Glasgow, the University of Strathclyde, and many more. Recently, the number of students attending Glasgow for educational purposes has increased dramatically.

Glasgow is home to many prestigious universities and colleges, and as a student city, there is no shortage of affordable student housing options.

Apart from academics, there are numerous other reasons to study in Glasgow, ranging from the city's entertainment and art to its thriving music scene. The city is home to many international students, and the diverse melting pot of cultures makes it one of the most exciting UK cities.

The universities listed below are the best in Glasgow for domestic and international students. 

  1. University Of Glasgow
  2. University Of Strathclyde
  3. The University Of the West of Scotland
  4. Glasgow Caledonian University


100,000+ students achieved their study abroad dreams with us.  Start your journey today.


Coventry has become a trendy student city due to the presence of esteemed universities such as the University of Warwick and Coventry University

This city has gained popularity due to its proximity to the University of Warwick, but the highly reputable Coventry University cannot be overlooked. Coventry’s affordable student studios and apartments are located near the campus, making it easy to explore the city.

 It is also just an hour away from London for quick day trips into the capital city's life for refreshment. Coventry is known among international students for its affordability and high employment opportunities.

It is particularly famous for mechanical engineering students because of the degree and job opportunities.

If you are looking for a mixed and vibrant culture, Coventry has several art galleries and theatres, as well as several pieces of music and sporting events. It was recently named the British City of Culture 2021 for its diversity and culture.

Coventry City has many more art galleries, museums, tree-lined parks, and a wealth of art and design expertise. It is the gathering place for the most fashionable people in Britain.

It has a thriving industry in the aforementioned fields and earned an excellent reputation due to its stellar student employment records. Within the Coventry territory, the following universities are the top choices among students:

  1. Coventry University 
  2. University of Warwick


Nottingham is one of the most affordable cities in the UK and is very popular among students. It has over 60,000 students; hence, students are bound to feel cultural diversity in this beautiful city. Be it accommodation cost, lunch expenses or gym cost, Nottingham is significantly cheaper to live in.

In addition to intense academic activities, the city has many things to do, from shopping and theatres to entertainment and dining. Getting around is simple, and you'll be greeted warmly by the friendly locals.

These things make Nottingham one of the best cities to live in in the UK as an international student.

  1. University Of Nottingham 
  2. Nottingham Trent University
  3. Nottingham Business School 
  4. Nottingham College Adams Building
  5. National Design Academy


Suppose you are an international student looking to study in a city teeming with vibrant culture, top-notch universities and networking opportunities. In that case, Studying in Birmingham can bring you a step closer to all this. 

Birmingham is the most fantastic city in the West Midlands, UK, with many attractions. 

The city centre has the Birmingham Art Gallery and Museum, famous for its Pre-Raphaelite masterpieces. Birmingham’s five prestigious universities attract thousands of international students each year, making it one of the most culturally diverse cities in the UK. 

Birmingham is also the second-largest city, with a student-friendly atmosphere, vibrant culture and nightlife, and many affordable renting houses, flats, and apartment options because of the large student population in the city.

It has numerous music festivals, international acts, sporting events, and local bars and clubs. 

Although it is frequently noted for its central location and great transport links to the rest of the UK's cities and locations, it has much to offer. The most popular universities in Birmingham are: 

  1. University Of Birmingham
  2. Birmingham City University
  3. University College Birmingham
  4. Newman University - Birmingham
  5. Aston University


A famous vibrant city in Northwest England, Newcastle upon Tyne is also known as Newcastle. It is considered the most popular student city in the UK. 

The city offers some of the best restaurants, cafes, shopping centres for daytime walkers, and iconic landmarks such as the Tyne Bridge and the Angel of the North. 

Newcastle is one of Britain's premier international metropolises, combining industrial heritage, Georgian architecture, and contemporary art and culture. 

It is also home to many fascinating museums and entertainment venues, including the prominent Theatre Royal and City Hall. 

If you are outgoing in the nightclub, the city has fantastic nightlife with various bars and clubs to treat yourself to. But more importantly, the city has some of the best universities. 

Studying in New Castle will help you gain a prestigious degree from a prestigious university.  

Being the city most liked by students, Newcastle houses three prestigious universities. Being a part of these colleges and educational institutes in Newcastle UK, you can fulfil all your study abroad dreams.

  1. Newcastle University
  2. Northumbria University
  3. Newcastle College 


The Scots recognize Aberdeen as the most suitable city to live and work in. 

The city has excellent academic opportunities, affordable student housing,  and stunning scenery that make this city an extremely attractive place for international students worldwide each year. 

This makes it one of the most popular international cities. The coast and the extraordinary landscape create a beautiful landscape. Extracurricular activities and thriving creative life, art, and culture provide unlimited fun and inspiration for exploration. 

In the UK, if you plan to travel through nearby international airports and some European cities only a short flight away from the hotel, Scotland is the ideal hub for exploring the best destinations in the rest of Europe. 

Scotland has an impressive educational record and endless history, making it an ideal destination for international students worldwide.

These are some famous universities situated in Aberdeen.

  1. University of Aberdeen
  2. University of Dundee
  3. University of Highlands and Islands


Brighton is one of the busiest cities in the UK that hosts festivals, concerts, bars and clubs, beach parties, and other events throughout the year, serving a large number of international students across the world. 

The best cafes, restaurants, comedy clubs, and vintage clothing stores are all over the city, and many activities are on every corner. Walking through Brighton’s painted streets will not disappoint you, sure. 

The most famous Universities within the city of Brighton will not allow you to think like an international student for other universities once you pick Brighton as your preferred location. 

You can efficiently study at famous universities like the University of Sussex or the University of Brighton. Both universities offer impressive courses and accommodation options, and both are chosen against the backdrop of the beautiful countryside of this southern English city.  

Each student can study throughout the year, for four months, or for several weeks during the winter or summer vacation. 

  1. University of Brighton
  2. University of Sussex

So, which one of the above cities is the best UK city to study and work for international students? 

100,000+ students achieved their study abroad dreams with us.  Start your journey today.


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