Accommodation for students in Cambridge at a glance
If living close to campus is top of your list when looking for student accommodation in Cambridge, Brunswick House is a must-see. Only a 24-minute walk to the University of Cambridge or a 10-minute walk to Anglia Ruskin University, this modern accommodation offers shared ensuite rooms and private studios, as well as great communal areas and study spaces. You’re also really close to the centre of Cambridge, so there are lots of bars, cafes, and restaurants to fill your time during study breaks.
For modern student housing in Cambridge that isn’t far from the city centre, check out Nido Hill Castle. Offering both ensuite rooms and studio living, this popular student halls has an on-site gym, comfortable social and study spaces as well as a packed calendar of social events. Location-wise, you’re only a short bus ride to the city centre, a 47-minute walk to the University of Cambridge, or a 42-minute walk to Anglia Ruskin University. If that’s not accessible to you, a short bus ride to each campus is also easily available.
For student flats in Cambridge with lots going on, have a look at The Cam Foundry. Just an easy 30-minute walk to the city centre, these buzzing Cambridge student halls have a wide range of shared and private rooms, as well as a games room, cinema room, and quiet study spaces. It’s a 40-minute walk from the University of Cambridge or a 24-minute walk to Anglia Ruskin University. However, you also have a bus stop right on your doorstep, which will take you to campus.
When looking for private student accommodation in Cambridge, it’s worth taking a look at The Railyard. Offering a wide variety of shared and private accommodation depending on your needs, this stylish student accommodation in Cambridge isn’t too far from the city centre and is a 31-minute walk to the University of Cambridge and a convenient 23-minute walk to Anglia Ruskin University. It boasts great social spaces for chilling with friends as well as quiet areas for when you need to hit the books. Making your room your own when you go away to university is important, check out our guide to cheap and easy ways to brighten up your student halls.
Cambridge at a glance
- Cambridge is home to some of the most prestigious higher educational establishments in the world. These include the University of Cambridge, Anglia Ruskin University, Westminster College, and Cambridge Regional College. As a result, there is an abundance of student housing in Cambridge to choose from.
- The University of Cambridge, founded in 1209, is now ranked one of the top five universities in the world.
- It’s actually quite a small city and, as a result, has a friendly and homely atmosphere. However, it does attract lots of students and tourists, which gives it a very vibrant social scene with lots going on.
- Due to its gorgeous architecture, Cambridge is often the film location of many famous films and television shows such as Wonder Woman 1984, The Theory of Everything, Chariots of Fire, and Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life.
- See the city by river and jump on one of the local Punting Tours. These longboats are a relaxing and fun way to see the sights.
- Take a break from your student halls in Cambridge by visiting the beautiful Botanic Gardens. This inviting green space has lots of trails to explore and events to give your mind a rest from studying.
- Explore the Arctic and Antarctic at The Scott Polar Research Institute. This interesting part of the university is well worth a visit for those who wish to learn more about the research happening in these regions.
- Catch a comedy, music, or dance gig at Cambridge Junction. This popular venue has a great schedule of entertainment to suit everyone.
- Spend an afternoon wandering around Cambridge Markets. Open every day, except Christmas Day, Boxing Day, and New Year’s Day, this popular local attraction has everything you need, including fresh food, art, plants, clothes, jewellery, books, music, and much more.
- Feeling brave? Why not join the locals for their New Year’s Day tradition and plunge yourself into the icy depths of the River Cam.
Student travel in Cambridge
Cambridge is a small city and is easy to get around. The main forms of transport are buses, trains, and cycling. Depending on where your student flats in Cambridge are located in relation to your university, there are several options for how you get around.
Buses are one of the most convenient ways to travel around Cambridge. Stagecoach is the main provider and runs regular and reliable services to get you from your student apartments in Cambridge to where you need to be. There is also the Route U, a subsidised bus service by the University of Cambridge that helps you get to campus for less.
Cambridge Station is the principal station serving the city and has great connections to surrounding areas and cities further afield. It’s not your best way to get around the city, this is best by bus, walking or cycling, but it is the best mode of transport for when you need to travel further afield. The companies servicing Cambridge Station are Greater Anglia and Great Northern, connecting to the rest of East Anglia and London King’s Cross or London Liverpool Street, Ipswich, Ely, Norwich, and Birmingham.
Cycling is a great way to get around Cambridge and it made the #6 spot on our 25 best universities for cycling in the UK list. Cambridge encourages cyclists and has built many safe and useful bike lanes and trails to help you navigate the city. You can also hire e-bikes and e-scooters if you don’t own a bike of your own.
Where do University of Cambridge students live?
There is a unique situation when it comes to student accommodation in Cambridge. All full-time students attending the University of Cambridge are required to live within a certain area known as “the precinct”, a three-mile radius around Great Saint Mary’s Church. If you wish to live outside of this area, you can apply for a special exemption.
The University of Cambridge’s main campus is right in the heart of the city, so living in this precinct is incredibly convenient. Not only do you have lectures and university resources on your doorstep, but you have vibrant cafes, restaurants, and bars right there, as well as lots of local attractions and cultural activities. Within this three-mile radius are certain amenities, depending on what’s important to you. For example, if you’re likely to head out of the city regularly and need to be close to the train station, accommodation in the southeast of the precinct, like The Railyard, is a great area for you.
Or, if you prefer your student housing in Cambridge to be slightly out of the buzz of the city centre, but still within the precinct, then accommodation in the north of the city, like Nido Castle Hill, can give you what you’re after. We suggest that you make a list of what’s important to you in your student accommodation, and pick your area with the precinct from there.
Being a popular city for students, Cambridge has some great student bars and pubs in the precinct. We recommend checking out The Eagle, Clare Bar, and 2648; not only do they have a great student social scene, but they’re in cool buildings or cellars, giving you a genuine Cambridge-style experience. Plus, having your student flats in Cambridge right in the city means you’re only ever a short walk away from the city’s amazing museums. We love spending the day wandering around the Fitzwilliam Museum or seeing the dinosaurs at the Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences.
Since you’re right in the city centre, why not climb the steps at Great Saint Mary’s Church and see the spectacular view of the city? It’s a bit of a rite of passage for University of Cambridge students and is worth doing at least once in your university career. It’s also fun to see if you can spot your student accommodation in Cambridge!
FAQs about Cambridge student halls
Is Cambridge a good place to live as a student?
Cambridge is a great place to live as a student due to its notable university, vibrant culture, and social events. It’s a small city but always has lots on, as well as a great selection of student accommodation in Cambridge close to cafes, bars and pubs.
Is Cambridge expensive for students?
The University of Cambridge is considered an expensive place to live and study in the UK, being ranked as the 38th most expensive city to study. This is dependent on tuition fees, cost of living, and the cost of accommodation for students in Cambridge. For advice on how students pay for accommodation, check out our blog.
Do Cambridge students live in halls?
At the University of Cambridge, all students are required to live in the university’s ‘precincts’ (an area with a three-mile radius around Great St Mary’s Church) during term time. Within that, they can choose to live in halls, accommodation offered by their college or private accommodation.
Students at Anglia Ruskin University are more typical, with halls offered in first year and many students opting to rent private student accommodation in Cambridge in the following years.
Can I view student accommodation in Cambridge?
If you would like to take an online viewing (over Skype or a similar platform), look out for the eye icon next to our listings. Otherwise, it’s best to contact the provider directly to see if they offer in-person viewings.
Some accommodations will also allow you to book in while you’re visiting your university on an open day, so you can see what the rooms look like with a student living in them!
Is Cambridge a good student city?
Cambridge is a scenic city with a buzzing music scene, brilliant nightlife and, of course, punting across the river on a lazy summer afternoon. With around 20% of Cambridge residents made up of students (and over 100 libraries!), Cambridge is the ideal student haven.
Are there different types of student accommodation in Cambridge?
Student accommodation in Cambridge ranges from single rooms in shared flats through to a studio or even a private flat to share with someone else! It all depends on your personal budget and preferences. If you need help choosing, check out our guide to different types of student accommodation.
How long will my tenancy agreement run?
Most student tenancy agreements last between 41 and 51 weeks, to cover the academic year. However, if you think you might need a longer or shorter tenancy agreement, some providers will be able to help you – simply ask the question when filling out our contact form.