education America's Coolest College Towns  

9.7k votes 1.6k voters 42k views 87 items Follow Embed

List Rules Favorite 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!

1
+ - 117 91
Santa Barbara 
                    is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Santa Barbara California, USA

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2
+ - 181 212
Berkeley 
                    is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Berkeley California, USA

3
+ - 85 73
San Diego 
                    is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
San Diego California, USA

4
+ - 77 79
San Luis Obispo 
                    is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
San Luis Obispo California, USA

5
+ - 77 91
San Francisco 
                    is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
San Francisco San Francisco Bay Area, California, USA

6
+ - 210 208
Boulder 
                    is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Boulder Colorado, USA

7
+ - 81 103
Los Angeles 
                    is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Los Angeles California, USA

8
+ - 215 228
Austin 
                    is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Austin Texas, USA

9
+ - 193 173
Madison 
                    is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Madison Wisconsin, USA

10
+ - 76 102
Santa Cruz 
                    is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Santa Cruz California, USA

11
+ - 193 240
Ann Arbor 
                    is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Ann Arbor Michigan, USA

12
+ - 60 90
Laguna Beach 
                    is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Laguna Beach California, USA

13
+ - 144 113
Boston 
                    is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Boston Massachusetts, USA

14
+ - 177 139
Lawrence 
                    is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Lawrence Kansas, USA

15
+ - 46 74
Davis 
                    is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Davis California, USA

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16
+ - 41 84
Chico 
                    is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Chico California, USA

17
+ - 37 70
Irvine 
                    is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Irvine California, USA

18
+ - 113 151
Eugene 
                    is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Eugene Oregon, USA

19
+ - 111 105
Kansas City 
                    is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Kansas City Missouri, USA

20
+ - 91 101
Cambridge 
                    is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Cambridge Massachusetts, USA

21
+ - 67 66
Seattle 
                    is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Seattle Washington, USA

22
+ - 121 167
Iowa City 
                    is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Iowa City Iowa, USA

23
+ - 85 165
Charlottesville 
                    is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Charlottesville Virginia, USA

24
+ - 82 156
Burlington 
                    is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Burlington Vermont, USA

25
+ - 104 131
Athens 
                    is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Athens Georgia, USA

26
+ - 102 166
Chapel Hill 
                    is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Chapel Hill North Carolina, USA

27
+ - 54 88
Auburn 
                    is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Auburn Alabama, USA

28
+ - 59 88
New York 
                    is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
New York Contiguous United States, USA

29
+ - 54 67
Bloomington 
                    is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Bloomington Indiana, USA

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30
+ - 71 141
Oxford 
                    is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Oxford Mississippi, USA

31
+ - 34 39
Fayetteville 
                    is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Fayetteville Arkansas, USA - Home of the Razorbacks! 

32
+ - 83 171
Washington, D.C. 
                    is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Washington, D.C. Contiguous United States, USA

33
+ - 46 58
Portland Oregon 
                    is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list America's Coolest College Towns

34
+ - 51 72
State College 
                    is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
State College Pennsylvania, USA

35
+ - 29 35
Monterey 
                    is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Monterey California, USA

36
+ - 26 42
Flagstaff 
                    is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Flagstaff Arizona, USA

37
+ - 24 34
San Jose 
                    is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
San Jose Silicon Valley, California, USA

38
+ - 46 81
Columbus 
                    is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Columbus Ohio, USA

39
+ - 20 25
Colorado Springs 
                    is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Colorado Springs Colorado, United States of America

40
+ - 61 128
Gainesville 
                    is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Gainesville Florida, USA

41
+ - 56 104
Amherst 
                    is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Amherst Massachusetts, USA

42
+ - 18 46
Chattanooga 
                    is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Chattanooga Tennessee, USA

43
+ - 38 84
Ithaca 
                    is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Ithaca New York, USA

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44
+ - 12 26
Harrisonburg 
                    is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Harrisonburg Harrisonburg, VA Metropolitan Statistical Area, Virginia

45
+ - 51 104
Knoxville 
                    is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Knoxville Tennessee, USA

46
+ - 35 66
Clemson 
                    is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Clemson South Carolina, USA

47
+ - 9 30
Athens 
                    is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Athens Tennessee, USA

48
+ - 35 81
Evanston 
                    is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Evanston Wyoming, USA

49
+ - 10 26
Norman 
                    is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Norman Oklahoma, USA

50
+ - 20 60
Champaign 
                    is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list America's Coolest College Towns
Champaign Illinois, USA