Australia is now the third most popular destination for international students worldwide. Sure, we have beautiful beaches and landscapes…but what is it that really makes student living in Australia so special? And which are the best student cities in Australia? Let’s take a look!
What makes Australia the ultimate exchange student destination?
Australia’s education system has a strong international reputation and this is proven year after year in the QS World University Rankings. Only the US and the UK have more universities listed among the world’s top universities, which is pretty amazing for a country of only 24 million people!
37 Australian universities were including in the list for 2018 based on academic reputation, employer reputation, research and international student mix. Australia’s universities make student exchange down under a dream! There are plenty of internationally recognised institutions to choose from across the country. Our universities are also praised for their leading research. In fact, penicillin, IVF and even Wi-Fi were all invented here in Australia.
Over a quarter of all people living in Australia were born overseas, so the country is filled with a diverse range of cultures. With such a high level of diversity, you will never struggle to find new and interesting foods, restaurants, grocers and cultural festivals from countries all around the world. Having authentic Vietnamese noodles, Spanish tapas and Mexican margaritas all in one day is standard for exchange students living in Australia.
As an international student, this also means you will always be able to find things you miss from your home country whilst studying abroad. This multicultural diversity is one of the main reasons why three of Australia’s cities are ranked within the top 20 of the Best Student Cities in the world by QS. Student exchange transition made easy!
Australia is often referred to as ‘the lucky country’ and this is reflected in the country’s laidback attitude. Life in Australia revolves around a healthy, outdoor lifestyle regardless if you live in a bustling city or a rural country town.
Three Australian cities feature in the world’s top 10 most liveable cities according to The Global Liveability Report. This high level of liveability, in combination with our generally sunny weather, is the reason why Australians can enjoy an easy-going lifestyle.
Being its own continent, Australia is spoilt with natural diversity. The country has tropical rainforests, a rugged outback, untouched beaches, vast deserts and rich coral reefs. So, make sure you prioritise travelling Australia on your student exchange. For students, there are always opportunities to explore some amazing spots on weekends and holidays. The country is also home to unique wildlife that you can only find in Australia, and despite what you may have heard, not all of our animals can kill you!
Working in Australia as an exchange student
The Australian exchange student visa allows international students to work up to 20 hours a week or full time during university holidays. This is a great advantage for students living in Australia as working not only gives you extra spending money, but it also gives you invaluable skills and experience. Working as an exchange student is a great way to meet new people, develop new skills, and create cashflow to support your exchange student #lifestyle.
Australia also offers Post Study Work visa for exchange students, therefore there are always opportunities to work in Australia after you graduate.
As Australia’s regions are diverse, each of our major cities are different and have developed their own unique student life. There really is no single best place to live in Australia, instead you have to choose the Australian city that suits you best. To help you out, we’ve given you a quick description of student life in some of Australia’s cities below.
Exchange Student Life in Sydney – beaches and a breathtaking harbour
When people think of Australia, Sydney’s iconic cityscape often comes to mind. The city is home to the Sydney Opera House, Harbour bridge and an amazing coastline. Living in Sydney as a student means being able to enjoy beach culture whilst still having all of the advantages of living in a major city. Students often walk along coastal trails, hang out at the beach after lectures or enjoy all of the multicultural food options Sydney has to offer.
Exchange Student Life in Melbourne – coffee, culture and sport
Voted the most liveable city seven years in a row by The Economist, Melbourne is a great choice for students. Melbourne has plenty on offer to boost your student exchange experience. Whether you know it as the coffee, café or culture capital, it is undeniable that the city and its student life revolves around food, art and music. Students in Melbourne enjoy live music events, hang out at the trendy St Kilda Beach or enjoy the some of the best brunch and coffee in the world. Plus Melbourne has plenty of great day trips to add to your student exchange bucket list! If you love sport, Melbourne is also the home of Australian Rules Football and the largest stadium in Australia, the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Exchange Student Life in Perth – untouched outdoors and a laidback lifestyle
Perth may be famous for being the most isolated city in the world, however the city itself is thriving and has a lot going on. Exchange student life in Perth is unique to Australia in so many ways. Swimming with dolphins, whale watching, exploring some of the world’s most untouched beaches and summer parties on Rottnest Island are common activities for students in Perth who enjoy a quieter, slower paced city. Nothing says exchange student lifestyle like pristine beaches that are just a hop, skip and jump away! Plus, Perth is also one of the sunniest cities in the world with an estimated 320 days of sunshine a year!
Exchange Student Life in Adelaide – a small city with a strong student atmosphere
Student exchange in Adelaide is a dream thanks to the cities plethora of top universities! Adelaide is smaller than Sydney and Melbourne but it is home to one of Australia’s best universities in particular. Students at the University of Adelaide are located right in the heart of the city, next to the State Library and around the corner from shops on Rundle Mall. Due to the university’s presence in the middle of the city, there is a vibrant student atmosphere and plenty of student cafes and bars. Adelaide itself is famous for its heritage buildings and like most places in Australia, you’re never far from the beach.
Although each Australian city has its own unique characteristics, the common trend is that they all have world-class universities. In any part of the country you will experience the easy-going Australian lifestyle whilst still being surrounded by cultures from all over the world. Combining all of these perks with the natural beauty of the country makes being a student in Australia pretty hard to beat!