While the most important thing on most students’ minds as they select their dream university is the quality of education they will receive, that’s certainly not the only feature of life on a college campus. Beyond prestige and reputation, many schools around the world offer their students the chance to study in a beautiful campus. Studying in such an architectural space adds an entirely new dimension of inspiration to the daily experience of education, and the sheer beauty of some college campuses has the power to draw students from all corners of the globe to study in their halls and be in awe of their magnificent design.
Here are ten of the most stunning college campuses in the world.
University of Heidelberg, Germany
While relatively small, Heidelberg is a town with a big presence in German culture and history. Home to the oldest university in Germany, officially known as the Ruprecht Karl University of Heidelberg, the town has long played an important role in the academic side of German life. It was first established in 1386 on the instruction of Pope Urban VI, making it not only Germany’s oldest university but one of the oldest surviving universities in the whole world!
The town was at the heart of the Romantic movement, and this appreciation for beauty is reflected in its campus design, which boasts a range of different architectural styles, including the famous red-brick Baroque facade of the University Library – currently ranked as the best university in the country!
Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland
It first received its charter in 1845. The school has since been of such importance to the United Kingdom that it had its own seat in the British parliament up until 1950!
Queen’s older buildings boast charming English architecture, while the newer additions to the college showcase the modern image that Queen’s University Belfast now projects, as it is currently ranked the leading third-level education institute in Northern Ireland.
Tsinghua University, China
Tsinghua University is situated in Beijing, China. First opening in 1911, it has since been an important institution both for China and the wider world, with many important political and cultural figures calling themselves alumni of the university.
Located in the academic district of Beijing, Tsinghua is home to a wealth of serene nature that provides a refreshing escape from the hustle and bustle of the busy capital.
University of Salamanca, Spain
Located to the west of Madrid, it traces its existence all the way back to 1130. The impressive age of the beautiful college campus in Salamanca is reflected in its stunning architecture, which is one of the finest examples of classical Spanish design, featuring many beautiful plateresque facades on its buildings.
Stanford University, USA
California, USA, is home to this educational establishment. Founded in 1885, it has since played an important role in American academia. One of the most famous and prestigious colleges in the USA, Stanford consistently ranks near the top of world university rankings. It is currently the alma mater of 30 living billionaires and 17 astronauts!
Despite being a relatively young establishment, Stanford’s architectural design incorporates the classic Spanish-influenced style so closely associated with California. Even better for students, these beautiful palazzo-style buildings are all set against the lush nature of California!
University of Bologna, Italy
t is considered to be the world’s oldest continuously operating colleges, having been founded all the way back in 1088. Known across the world for more than just its age, the University of Bologna campus is home to some of the most stunning architecture in all of Italy, including several Palazzos, and buildings that incorporate both Gothic and Renaissance design. There’s also a 2-hectare botanical garden, so students can enjoy the natural beauty as well as man-made.
Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia
It’s impossible to miss the main building go the Lomonosov Moscow State University, as it stands at a whopping 240 metres tall and towers over the surrounding campus. Being the oldest university in Russia, students are drawn by both the fact that the university commands a lot of respect, and its iconic architecture. The campus is surrounded by hosts of greenery which remain beautiful all year round – snow or sun!
Cambridge University, England
One of the UK’s most famous colleges, the University of Cambridge is closely associated with a tradition of the elite and powerful. For centuries, prominent political and cultural leaders have called the walls of Cambridge’s many colleges home; in fact, the university is the second oldest in the English speaking world!
Made up of 31 colleges, Cambridge offers beautiful architecture that showcases the age of the institution, and the periods of history through which it has survived. Students can expect stone castles, sprawling fields, and elegant dining halls to serve as the backdrop for their world-class education.
National Autonomous University of Mexico
The largest university in Latin America, the NAU of Mexico also boasts one of the biggest campuses in the world. Designed by some of Mexico’s most renowned 20th-century artists, the campus is, in fact, a UNESCO world heritage site! Students complete a prestigious study surrounded by murals painted by legends such as Diego Rivera and David Siquieros!
Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
Trinity College is Ireland’s oldest university and sits at the heart of the capital city. Known for its famous Long Room, and home to the ancient Book of Kells, the campus of Trinity College is made up of charming cobblestone paths, sprawling greens, and many impressive Neo-classical buildings. This university offers students a serene beauty, right at the heart of Irish life!
Marcus Ditter is a blogger, professional architect, and interior designer. Always eager to spread a passion for design, Marcus’ expertise can currently be accessed through PapersOwl, where he translates his love of architecture into well-crafted papers. His passion for design has seen his work published across a wide variety of journals and editorials.