About Bloomington

Our graduate students weigh in – and others agree

We asked our graduate students to tell us what made Bloomington a remarkable place to live, and were surprised by the range of answers we received. Whether you are into nightlife, the arts, sports, good food, nature, or just want to live in a great community, Bloomington is known as one of the best college towns in the country.

Rand-McNally selected Bloomington as one of the eight most desirable places to live in the United States, based on economy, personal safety, climate, housing, services, and leisure activities. And it is affordable: Periodic surveys conducted by the American Chamber of Commerce Researchers Association have shown that the cost of living in Bloomington is consistently at or below the national average.

Warm + Welcoming

Bloomington is distinguished by the people who live here, and by those who spend time here as part of the university. Home to a diverse and international community, it is marked by Midwestern charm, open-minded residents, and a peaceful, community-minded way of life.

Check out our exciting small city

Never before have I been to a place where it was so easy to make friends. At the university, on the bus, in a store. Bloomingtonians are warm and welcoming, and that, above all, makes life livable in this town. Bloomington was chosen as one of the top ten college towns in the U.S. for its rich mixture of atmospherics and academia.

Edward B. Fiske, former education editor of the New York Times

Sustainability + Livability

During the growing season, City Hall hosts a huge Farmer’s Market every Saturday morning. The Monroe County Public Library is considered one of the best in the nation, with a huge browsing collection of books, music, and films. Public transportation is easily accessible from everywhere in town, and most of the buses are hybrid electric. The area boasts a large number of public parks, including a Community Orchard. The City has an active Sustainability Commission.

Learn more about Bloomington’s sustainability

Impressive + beautiful campus resources

Ours is one of the most beautifully landscaped and wooded campuses in America, marked by graceful limestone buildings. Cited as one of the five most beautiful campuses in the United States by Thomas A. Gaines in his book The Campus as a Work of Art, it includes wooded pathways and an arboretum.

The Indiana Memorial Union is one of the largest student unions in the country, with a hotel and conference facilities.

Besides the Herman B Wells full research library, the campus hosts a dozen satellite libraries, the Lilly Library rare books and manuscripts archive, and the archives of the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction.

The Eskenazi Museum of Art includes remarkable works by Picasso, Braque, Davis, Rembrandt, Monet, Pollock, Rivera, as well as stunning ancient and non-Western collections.

See our campus for yourself