Colleges & Universities
3.7k voters

America's Coolest College Towns

Updated March 8, 2020 22.4k votes 3.7k voters 69.7k views84 items

List RulesFavorite US cities in which a significant portion of the population is made up of college students.

List of the best college towns and cities. These locations provide not just a great university giving students a world-class education, but also a fun and diverse environment that'd conducive to learning, building a community and personal network and, more generally, gaining life experience. (There's also some fun places to party in most of them. You know, if any college students you know are into that sort of thing.)

A college town can refer to any area where the population is considerably impacted, or even dominated, by a local college or university. Typically, this indicates an area that has a relatively low population compared to the number of students at a university. Large cities with a lot of university students - such as Boston or Philadelphia - do not typically count as "college towns" because of the overall number of cities counter-acting the influence of college students.

Towns that do have an overwhelmingly large number of college students tend to be impacted in familiar ways. Often, there will be additional bookstores, coffee shops, independent movie theaters, record stores and other businesses that appeal largely to a younger, academic demographic. Additionally, there will also be a surplus of bars and inexpensive restaurants. Rent prices also tend to be affected by the demand for housing in the area near to the university, or to public transportation leading to the university.

This list collects Ranker Community picks for the coolest, most fun college towns in the US. Vote up your favorites, and if the place where your favorite townies live isn't listed, make your own version of the list and add it on there!
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  • 1
    366
    347

    Boulder

    Colorado, USA
  • 2
    396
    401

    Austin

    Texas, USA
  • 3
    357
    308

    Boston

    Massachusetts, USA
  • 4
    377
    365

    Madison

    Wisconsin, USA
  • 5
    285
    311
    ttr12276 added

    San Diego

    California, USA
  • 6
    225
    213

    Cambridge

    Massachusetts, USA
  • 7
    264
    319
    Elise Hennigan added

    Santa Barbara

    California, USA
  • 8
    200
    224
    gman95125 added

    Seattle

    Washington, USA
  • 9
    254
    241

    Athens

    Georgia, USA
  • 10
    325
    384

    Ann Arbor

    Michigan, USA
  • 11
    214
    231

    Chapel Hill

    North Carolina, USA
  • 12
    166
    207

    State College

    Pennsylvania, USA
  • 13
    185
    259

    Eugene

    Oregon, USA
  • 14
    102
    126
    beernbugs added

    Honolulu

    Hawaii, USA
  • 15
    88
    100
    mick-tranor added

    Tallahassee

    Florida, USA
  • 16
    75
    103
    beernbugs added

    Boone

    North Carolina, USA
  • 17
    94
    83
    RobLein added

    Tempe

    Arizona, USA
  • 18
    85
    117
    Mike Filliben added

    Tucson

    Arizona, USA
  • 19
    41
    23
    Luke Albright added

    Stanford

    California, USA
  • 20
    85
    117
    marcooch76 added

    Morgantown

    West Virginia, USA
  • 21
    109
    137
    zxray added

    Colorado Springs

    Colorado, United States of America
  • 22
    146
    216
    beernbugs added

    Santa Cruz

    California, USA
  • 23
    75
    79
    RobLein added

    Minneapolis

    Minnesota, USA
  • 24
    102
    148
    beernbugs added

    Flagstaff

    Arizona, USA
  • 25
    113
    162
    PeteBoyle added

    Ithaca

    New York, USA
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List Rules: Favorite US cities in which a significant portion of the population is made up of college students.