Discover Deakin, Lifestyle, Study

Geelong has everything you want and more

March 16, 2023 - 4 min read

When people think of moving to Australia, their first thought is often the big cities like Melbourne. But you should not overlook the smaller cities that can offer a quieter lifestyle. Geelong is the second largest city in the Australian state of Victoria. Deakin University has two campuses there. As a destination for international students, Geelong can be more affordable and easier to adapt to than Melbourne.

Vietnamese student Stacy was attracted to Geelong’s ‘picturesque hill landscapes, breath-taking sea views and tranquil ambience that make you feel at peace after a hard day.’ And Stacy also points out that ‘you can always travel to Melbourne by train in roughly one hour.’

Echoing Stacy’s opinion, Asef from Bangladesh loves the ‘pleasant weather, diverse culture, beautiful beaches and the great restaurants and cafés.’ And, he says, ‘Deakin is one of the finest universities in Australia and the opportunity to study in the relaxing environment that Geelong offers is like a cherry on top of the cake. What else can one ask for?’

Deakin’s Geelong campuses have their unique characteristics

Deakin’s Waterfront Campus, as the name suggests, is on the waterfront in Geelong’s downtown. You can enjoy the beach and the city life at the same time as you study in 19th-century warehouses renovated into modern teaching spaces.

Geelong downtown is a lively place with shopping, services and dining opportunities. But the real highlight of Geelong is Eastern Beach, right across the road from Deakin’s campus. One of Geelong’s most famous attractions, the waterfront area has great places to eat, relax, swim and explore. It is also where many of Geelong’s public events and festivals take place. ‘It has a great balance’ says Shandy Mae, who moved to Geelong from Singapore to study at Deakin, ‘after a long day of studying you can easily take a walk along the waterfront and enjoy yourself.’ As a place to get away from studying for a while, Eastern Beach always has something exciting to see or do.

‘You don’t have to worry of missing out on anything when moving to Geelong!’ – Stacy

Deakin’s Waurn Ponds Campus offers a very different experience. Located on the edge of the city, it features industry-leading sport science, creative arts and engineering facilities in a park-like setting with abundant native birdlife.

With its own renewable energy power grid and use of recycled water, Waurn Ponds is an example of the University’s commitment to sustainability. Coming from India to study engineering, Sarbjeet ‘wanted a quiet and beautiful place just like Geelong.’ He finds Deakin’s efforts to make Waurn Ponds Campus carbon neutral appealing. ‘It is really good to see Deakin develop a vision for sustainability. A sustainability plan for Waurn Ponds Campus is a very important step towards creating a climate resilient future.’

Geelong Waurn Ponds Campus

Geelong Waterfront Campus

Getting a real Australian experience

Once you have discovered the great places on or near the campuses, it is time to explore the Geelong region.

Geelong has easy access everything you imagine when thinking about Australia. The nearby coast is an ideal place to try surfing for the first time, under the supervision of a teacher of course. For swimmers and divers, the Barwon Bluff Marine Sanctuary is just a short distance away. The sanctuary is home to a diverse range of sea life. If you are lucky enough, you might even spot a seal. More sea life can be found nearby in Queenscliff Harbour, the location of Deakin’s Marine Science Centre. In Queenscliff, you can book a professionally guided swim in the open water with playful seals and dolphins.

Land animals can also be found near Geelong in safe and friendly places like the Serendip Sanctuary. Or if you are looking for something bigger, the Werribee Open Range Zoo just outside Geelong has all the well-known Australian animals and more. For students new to Australia, this a great place to experience the Australian wildlife everyone has been telling you about.

Though Geelong is not as famous as Melbourne, that does not mean you should not think about it. Attracted to Geelong’s safe, welcoming and affordable offering, Filipino student Megan recommends trying out the lesser-known city: ‘be brave and take the shot. Opportunities to study, relax, party, experience nature and have Melbourne so close by. I am thanking my lucky stars.’

Quick links

Find out more about Geelong

Learn more about accommodation and living costs


Ask us a question close

Why study at Deakin?

As one of Australia's leading tertiary education providers, Deakin offers a personalised experience enhanced by world-class programs and innovative digital engagement. We lead by creating opportunities to live and work in a connected, evolving world.

#1 university in Australia for educational experience*
Top 1% of universities worldwide**
#1 university careers service in Australia^
Victoria's #1 university for teaching quality^^
#1 university in Victoria for student satisfaction#

* 2022 Student Experience Survey, based on undergraduate students, UA benchmark group Victorian universities.
** ARWU Rankings 2023
^^ 2022 Student Experience Survey, UA benchmark group Victorian universities.
# Australian Graduate Outcomes Survey 2016–2022 (GOS), Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT).

Make an enquiry

You can access our enquiry form here or by using the Learn More button at the bottom of this page.