7 Underrated Places To Study Abroad

By Elana Goodwin on December 22, 2015

Each year, the number of college students who choose to study abroad grows, and while many opt to study abroad in more popular locales like the United Kingdom and Italy, there are a number of awesome study abroad locations that are typically skipped over, forgotten about, or unknown.

Here are seven underrated countries to study abroad in.

Photo Credit: admissions.byu.edu/study-abroad

1. The Czech Republic. Home to more than 10.6 million people, the Czech Republic is nestled between Germany, Poland, Slovakia, and Austria. Prague — the capital — is on the rise as a popular European destination, known for its historic landmarks and architecture, along with its nightlife.

If you choose to study abroad in the Czech Republic, besides seeing Prague, you’ll want to check out the Krkonoše National Park which is located in the Liberec and Hradec Králové regions of the Czech Republic; the Charles Bridge and Prague Castle in Prague; the Moravian Karst in the South Moravian Region; and indulge in some Czech beer.

2. Norway. Norway is a beautiful country with a population of more than 5 million people, and faces the North Atlantic Ocean and Barents Sea. Located between Sweden, Finland, Russia, and Denmark, Norway has a rich history and stunning scenery with some of the most gorgeous coastal views in the world.

Oslo and Bergen are the two biggest cities in Norway and both are worth visiting, and you’ll definitely want to carve out time to explore the Norwegian Fjords and Gudvangen, which is a village in Aurland where you can see the Nærøydalselvi river empty into the fjord.

3. Croatia. Located in Central and Southeast Europe, Croatia is surrounded by Hungary, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, the Adriatic Sea, and Slovenia, and has a population of about 4.3 million people.

If you study abroad here, you’ll want to check out Telaš?ica on Dugi Otok Island in the Adriatic Sea; the Kornati Islands; the Plitvice Lakes National Park, which is famous for its beautiful lakes and waterfalls; and Marija Bistrica — the most visited Catholic pilgrimage site in Croatia.

Of course, you’ll also want to visit the popular cities of Dubrovnik, Split, Zagreb, and Pula.

Hallstatt, Austria
Photo Credit: Flickr/traumlichtfabrik

4. Austria. This landlocked country has a population of more than 8.5 million people, and is bordered by the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia, Italy, and Switzerland — which means it’s a great country to study abroad in if you want to visit some other European countries, too.

The Alps mountain ranges are located partially in Austria, making it largely mountainous. It’s also a great alternative country to Germany as German is the official language of Austria. The bigger cities of Vienna, and Salzburg should be on your must-see list, as should be the smaller beautiful city Hallstatt, located near a lake called the Hallstatter See.

5. Denmark. Home to about 5.7 million people, Denmark is part of the Kingdom of Denmark which is also comprised of the Faroe Islands and Greenland. You’ll want to visit Copenhagen and the Tivoli Gardens; the Skjoldungernes Land National Park just 30 minutes from Copenhagen; LEGOLAND in Billund; the Wadden Sea National Park in West Jutland; and South Zealand.

Make sure to also carve out time to see the Faroe Islands, which are 18 major islands about halfway between Norway and Iceland.

6. Belgium. If you’re thinking France because you speak or love French, consider this underrated alternative as Belgium is predominantly comprised of two linguistic groups, one of which is French (the other is Dutch).

Home to more than 11.1 million people, the country is famous for beer, chocolate, and waffles. Besides indulging in some yummy cuisine, you’ll want to check out the cities of Antwerp, Ghent, Brussels, Liege, Bruges, and Verviers.

7. Sweden. This Scandinavian country has frozen stretches, rocky islands, beautiful lakes and castles, and a population of nearly 10 million. Besides exploring the well-known city of Stockholm, you’ll want to visit the cities of Gothenburg, Malmo, and Uppsala; see the Drottningholm Palace and the Djurgardsbron bridge; and check out the stunning Stora Sjofallet and Sarek National Parks to take in the Scandinavian Mountains and beauty of Sweden.

So if you’re thinking about studying abroad next year, rather than going for the classic study abroad locales, consider one of these awesome underrated places to study abroad — you can always still visit the more popular cities on day trips!

By Elana Goodwin

Uloop Writer
I am currently serving as the Director/Managing Editor for Uloop News. I've been part of the Uloop family since 2013 and in my current role, I recruit writers, edit articles, manage interns, and lead our National Team, among other duties. When I'm not writing or editing, I love being outside, reading, and photography! I have a Bachelor's degree in English with a double-minor in Sociology and Criminology & Criminal Justice from The Ohio State University. If you have questions or just want to chat, don't hesitate to reach out! Email me at elana@uloop.com.

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