Is Dundee A Good Student City? | The ULTIMATE Guide

Table of Contents

Dundee has earnt the title of Scotland’s sunniest city, with tons of things to do and see, not only for students but for those wanting to visit too. Located in eastern Scotland, Dundee is a coastal city on the Firth of Tay estuary that attracts on average, 20,000 students each year – for a small city, wow! 

If you’re curious about whether studying at the University of Dundee or Abertay University is going to be the best choice for you, no matter which you choose we’re going to show you there is a lot to love about Dundee in our ultimate guide to the city. 

If you don’t believe us, then believe this – Dundee is rated #21 out of 81 University locations on Student Crowd, which FYI is reviewed by students themselves. Hell yeah! 

Dundee city

1. The Culture and Heritage of Dundee 

Due to its location, Dundee has stunning views across the river and countryside meaning you are close enough to nature that you can go and explore! The cities landscapes are great for photography opportunities too.  

Dundee is a cultural city, so you’ll never be shy of things to discover. There are a variety of museums and galleries located in the city such as McManus Art Gallery & Museum which has a mix of art, history and environment exhibits giving you an insight into Dundee. A trip here would make the perfect day out for you and your mates!  

Dundee is also home to Scotland’s first design museum, The V&A, which has gorgeous views along the city’s historic waterfront. It features permanent displays and temporary exhibitions which showcase designs from around the world. The museum is free entry, so you don’t have to worry about forking out on entry prices! 



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If you want to learn more about Dundee’s past, then there’s a variety of heritage sites to visit including Broughty Castle Museum which was built in 1496 and has survived many battles throughout history. The views from the top are spectacular with its location being on the banks of the River Tay. 

Do you want to discover beautiful medieval architecture in Scotland? Then Dudhope Castle should be added to your list, which will give you a taste of Dundee’s ancient history.  

We couldn’t possibly sit and name all the great cultural places in Dundee but a few other options we think are worth visiting include the Tay Rail Bridge, Discovery Point, HMS Unicorn, Camperdown Wildlife Centre and the Dundee Contemporary Arts.  

Dundee castle

2. Nightlife in Dundee 

If you’re more interested in partying it up in the present, then that’s okay! Dundee has a great nightlife scene from lively clubs to bars full of personality, perfect for catching up with a friend over cocktails.   

We want to keep you informed on the best places to spend your nights in Dundee whether you are looking for places to party hard or places with more of a chilled vibe, this city has it all. Let’s wait no further. 

25 S Tay St, Dundee DD1 1NR

Underground is a nightclub which hosts weekly (and daily) student nights such as ‘Juicy Tuesdays’ which are said to be iconic nights out in Dundee. Underground plays a variety of music genres and is open 7 nights a week, so if you are a bit of a party animal this is the place for you.  



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31 S Ward Rd, Dundee DD1 1PU

Club Tropicana is a nightclub that is loved for its throwback anthems from the 80’s and 90’s. The nightclub often has live music events and a variety of themed nights on. Upon moving to Dundee, you’ll come to learn that you have not experienced a proper night out until you’ve danced the night away at Club Tropicana. 

Best bars in Dundee

We promised you places with a chilled vibe to spend your evenings, didn’t we? Here are our best recommendations.  

  • Draffens

Draffen’s is a prohibition style bar located at a secret location – don’t worry, it’s not too difficult to find, after all Dundee is a small city. The vibes at this bar give you a blast to the past with its speakeasy theme and basement setting. The cocktail menu has loads of drinks to choose from, chatting with friends or catching up with your parents on a visit to the city, has never been more lovely than at Draffen’s.  

  • Art Bar

Art Bar is another popular place you must go to as a student wanting to experience the Dundee nightlife. We can’t get enough of basement bars! Located close to the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, this place attracts many due to its array of DJs and bands that play. With a beer garden and cheap drink prices too, it is for sure a busy and much-loved spot for those good times.  


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We wish we could sit and tell you all about Dundee after dark, but we want you to experience the rest for yourself and fall in love with nights in the city.  

If you need a helping hand about student pubs in Dundee, that are great for a few drinks and a bite to eat for that well needed mid-day break, then we have one for you here 

People socialising in a bar

3. Transport in and around Dundee 

Dundee is a good-sized city where everything is within reach; you don’t have to get public transport to go everywhere unlike some other cities. Due to it being smaller and more compact, you can soak up the sights by walking or cycling anywhere in Dundee.  

The public transport system in Dundee is efficient and easy to navigate with busses and train services. If you want to get to the larger areas of the city or are going on a day trip to somewhere outside the centre, then you have a collection of modes of transport you can use. 

If you are curious about transportation in the city, such as for those train trips home to see your parents or friends then we can help you out. The main train station in the city is Dundee which has both central and national rail routes. 

If you are coming from the opposite end of the current to study in the city or if you’re an international student, then you can even use Dundee Airport as your preferred hub for transport. Although if you’re planning on flying home to a different country, you’ll have to get a connecting flight to another airport as Dundee only offers national flights.  

Our Prestige property Marketgait Apartments, is just a 10-minute walk from Dundee city centre so you don’t even need to worry about planning bus routes. You can snooze them alarms and go back to sleep, it won’t take you long to get to your morning lecture if you book with us – Ahh blissful! 

Scottish rail train

4. Shop till you drop 

Clothing haul time! 

Dundee’s city centre is full of everything you could need. If you love an afternoon of shopping with friends or even by yourself, then you are in for a treat. Dundee has a selection of shops that are close in location, so it is perfect if you need a party outfit as you can get items from multiple places without running all over the place.  

 The Overgate Shopping Centre is one of two Dundee shopping centres with over 60 fashion outlets such as New Look, Primark and JD Sports so you can show off your haul to your flatmates. The shopping centre also has fast-food places like Five Guys and Subway for when you get peckish. After settling into your new home in Dundee, you can attend the student lock in event at Overgate which is an exclusive event just for those studying at university, where you can receive big discounts such as 20% off on tons of retailers as well as enter prize draws. Who doesn’t love to win a freebie, right? 


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The other shopping hub in Dundee is the Wellgate Shopping Centre which has two shopping floors with the likes of B&M and Home Bargains, so you can grab any toiletries needed, and if it’s your turn to buy the flat kitchen roll go here, it’s the cheapest! The shopping centre has a third floor which features a food-court, a JD Gym and Dundee Central Library. This place is great If you’re looking to study and stay fit whilst in Dundee, you have both in one place! 


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If you’re keen to find out the best independent shops in Dundee, well Spex Pistols must be on the list. It’s an indie opticians which sells designer, vintage and classic glasses, whilst also doubling up as a cosy gig venue! 

Perhaps you’re looking for contemporary art stores in Dundee? Eduardo Alessandro (EA) Studios is the place to go with a selection of comic art, handmade ceramics, jewellery and an array of gifts.  

Dundee shopping

5. The Cost of Living in Dundee as a Student 

Everyone knows that as a student, you’re going to be thinking about the cost of things a lot of the time. “Can I really afford to have a takeaway again tonight?” might be a question you find yourself pondering over. However, don’t worry, the cost of living in Dundee is really cheap compared to other cities. Oxford Royale even dubbed the University of Dundee as the cheapest place to be a student in the UK. The study didn’t just analyse rent prices but also the average prices pint of beer, cocktails, fast-food and a taxi fare in the city! So, rest assured you and your bank will be loving life in Dundee. 

Dundee university

We hope we have helped you realise what an amazing student city Dundee really is! You can explore some other Dundee focused content here to find out more! 

If you are planning to attend university in Dundee, then book in with Prestige properties, our student accommodation is located only a short distance away from key universities and close to transport links across the Scottish city.