Which Australian City Should You Study In?

Which Australian City Should You Study In?

Carly Williams

Updated January 16, 2020 Updated January 16

Australia has it all. With stunning beaches and landscapes, plenty of sunshine, and a laidback lifestyle, it’s no surprise students from all around the world choose Australia as their study abroad destination. It helps as well that there are several top universities present in every city.

If you’re reading this, you’ve either decided you want to study abroad in Australia, or you’re at least entertaining the thought. Determining where to study abroad can be a difficult decision, especially when considering a country as massive as Australia. So, before you make the journey halfway across the world, it’s important to determine which Aussie destination suits you best.


Calling all hipsters! Known as the culture capital of Australia, Melbourne attracts those itching an artsy fix. Offering study breaks in trendy cafes paired with an incredible cup of Melbourne coffee (seriously, it cannot be beat), comedy clubs, live music, art galleries, and beautiful beaches right outside the city—Melbourne is the perfect place for anyone wanting a truly unique Australian experience.

Ranked third in the Best Student Cities ranking last year, Melbourne takes the crown as Australia’s leading student city. There is an immense amount of top universities to choose from, whether you’re looking for undergraduate or postgraduate programs, depending on what you wish to study.

Although it’s a pricey place to live due to its high living costs, the overall high standard of living makes it a tough city to beat. It’s no wonder Melbourne has taken the spot for the world’s most livable city for the seventh year running.

In terms of weather, the summer months bring forth hot, sunny days, while the winter months can see the temperature drop to considerably cooler than other northern parts of the country – you can even grab your skis and head to the mountains only a few hours outside of the city.

However, Melburnians insist the city vibe makes up for the lack of cold days. Melbourne is also the starting point for the ever so stunning Great Ocean Road…perfect for a road trip!


Australia’s largest city and financial hub, Sydney is a happening place that never seems to miss a beat. The city’s perfect combination of urban and natural life makes it a top candidate to study abroad in, and you’ll want to spend all your time exploring the city’s world-famous beaches, over 100km of national parks, and 400 parks and open spaces throughout the city. With regularly bright blue, sunny skies, Sydney is the perfect city for making the most of the outdoors.

Sydney also has a thriving nightlife, with so many different scenes to check out, depending on what your Friday night typically looks like. From rooftop hideaways, world-class nightclubs, live music venues, and beachside patios—there is literally something for everyone.

Given it’s the most popular tourist destination in Australia, you can expect to be running into vacationers every day. But, with a city so large, you can easily escape the hustle and bustle if you choose to do so. It’s location on the east coast also make it a quick flight away from so many awesome vacation spots in Australia (you can fly to Melbourne for under $100).

So, if you are fast-paced individual who loves the city life, then Sydney may be the perfect place for you.


Nestled on the west coast of Australia, Perth is known for its laidback and chilled-out city vibe. It’s perfect for someone who likes the idea of living in the city, but doesn’t want to feel too overwhelmed. As it’s quite isolated from the other major cities in Australia, Perth is dramatically less touristy than Melbourne and Sydney but it still remains an active city with heaps of recreational attractions.

With less people here, life is more relaxed and slow-paced — no one ever seems to be in too much of a rush in this city. You will never feel overwhelmed with a walk through the CBD, and you can lay on the beach without a few hundred people lying beside you.

With a heavenly climate, Perth clocks in an average of 3,000 hours of sunlight every year (seriously, when it rains the whole city shuts down). Even in the winter months you’ll catch locals soaking up rays at the beach following by a morning surf.

The beaches in Western Australia are hard to beat, with white sand and crystal-clear waters right outside the city center. With an endless amount of stunning coastline to explore, from the world-famous surf town of Margaret River to the picturesque beaches of Esperance, there will be no shortage of road trips to take on your days off.

Expect to spend weekends chilling by the beach, visiting trendy rooftop bars and a variety of clubs to match your mood. If you enjoy chilled-out weekends full of surf, sunshine, and a few cheeky pints, then look no further than a year abroad in Perth. West coast, best coast!

This article was originally published in May 2018 . It was last updated in January 2020

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