Which Ivy League College Has The Best Dorms?

In this article, we will explore the Ivy League college dorms and evaluate their overall quality, comfort, and convenience to help you determine which institution has the best dorms.

As one of the most prestigious university groups in the world, Ivy League colleges are known for their excellent academic programs and impressive campus facilities. 

Among these facilities, dormitories play a vital role in shaping the college experience for students. While each Ivy League institution has unique features and amenities, the question of which Ivy League college has the best dorms is frequently discussed among students, parents, and college administrators. 

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is based on research and publicly available sources. Opinions and preferences regarding dormitory quality can vary widely among individual students. While we have attempted to provide a comprehensive overview of the factors that may impact the quality of Ivy League college dormitories, readers are advised to do their own research and consider their own needs and preferences when evaluating housing options.

What Are The Ivy Leagues?

The Ivy League is a group of eight prestigious colleges and universities in the northeastern United States. The members of the Ivy League include: 

These institutions are known for their rigorous academic programs, high selectivity in admissions, and rich history and tradition. To learn more about the Ivy Leagues, check out my other article for more details.

The term “Ivy League” originally referred to the athletic conference formed by these schools in the 1950s. Still, it has since come to represent these institutions’ academic excellence and prestige.

The Types Of Dorms Available At Ivy Leagues

The Ivy League colleges offer a variety of dormitory options to their students, including traditional dormitories, suite-style housing, apartment-style housing, and themed communities.

Traditional dormitories typically consist of shared living spaces, such as hallways or common rooms, with individual bedrooms for each student.

Suite-style housing usually features shared living areas and bathrooms for small groups of students, with individual bedrooms.

Apartment-style housing provides more independent living options, with full kitchens, living rooms, and individual bedrooms and bathrooms.

Themed communities are designed to unite students with shared interests or identities, such as language immersion programs, wellness communities, or gender-inclusive housing options.

Many Ivy League colleges also offer a range of amenities within their dormitories, such as fitness centers, study rooms, music practice spaces, and laundry facilities. 

Some colleges may offer specialized housing options, such as graduate student housing, family housing, or upperclassman-only housing.

Factors To Consider When Ranking Ivy League College Dorms

When ranking Ivy League college dorms, there are several factors to consider. Here are some of the most significant ones we will consider in this article.

Student Life. When evaluating the quality of dormitories at Ivy League colleges, it’s essential to consider the student life and culture on campus. 

This can include factors such as the availability of social events, extracurricular activities, and opportunities for community involvement. 

Dormitories located in campus areas with a vibrant social atmosphere may particularly appeal to students who value a lively student life.

Walkability. The walkability of the campus and surrounding at Ivy League colleges. Students value dormitories within easy walking distance of academic buildings, dining halls, and other campus amenities. And nearby off-campus resources include restaurants, grocery stores, and public transportation.

Campus. The campus’s physical layout and overall design can impact the quality of dormitory life. Factors such as the availability of green spaces, outdoor seating areas, and easy access to academic buildings and other campus amenities can all contribute to a positive dormitory experience.

Party Scene. For some students, the availability of a vibrant party scene may be a factor to consider when evaluating dormitory options.

Safety. Ensuring a safe living environment is critical when evaluating dormitory options. Factors such as security cameras, well-lit pathways, and secure entrances can all contribute to a sense of safety and security.

Campus Food. We will evaluate the quality and variety of dining options on campus. Dormitories near high-quality dining halls, communal kitchens, or other cooking facilities are preferred.

Location. The location of the dormitory in relation to other campus amenities will be considered when evaluating dormitory options.

Dorms. Ultimately, the overall quality of the dormitories themselves is a critical consideration when evaluating dormitory options at Ivy League colleges. We will rank the top Ivy League dorms.

The Ranks

Finding the right dormitory can significantly impact a student’s college experience. With this in mind, we have researched and compiled a list of the best Ivy League dorms, considering the factors above.

While dorm preferences can vary from person to person, our rankings provide valuable insights and information for students and parents looking to make informed decisions about their housing options.

Student Life

Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College

Based on various surveys and student reviews, it can be argued that Brown University, Columbia University, Dartmouth College, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, and Yale University offer a vibrant student life and culture on their campuses. 

These colleges are known for their active student organizations, diverse extracurricular activities, and ample opportunities for community involvement. 


Columbia University

According to rankings, Columbia University is known for its highly walkable campus and surrounding area. It scores a whopping 97/100 in the walkability scores.

 Located in the heart of New York City, Columbia’s campus is compact and easily navigable, with academic buildings, residential halls, and other campus amenities within walking distance. 

Additionally, the surrounding neighborhood of Morningside Heights offers a wealth of off-campus resources, including restaurants, cafes, shops, and public transportation options.

Take a look at the runner-ups:


Princeton University

Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Harvard University, Princeton University, and Yale University are widely regarded as having some of the most beautiful and well-designed campuses among Ivy League colleges. 

Each institution boasts a unique architectural style and layout, with well-maintained green spaces, historic buildings, and state-of-the-art facilities that contribute to an enriching educational experience. 

Party Scene

University Of Pennsylvania

Regarding the party scene on campus, the University of Pennsylvania and Yale University are often cited as the top contenders among Ivy League colleges. 

Both universities offer a lively social atmosphere, with various social events and activities catering to different interests and tastes. 

Additionally, these institutions are known for their active Greek life communities, which significantly shape the social scene on campus. Note that party culture can vary yearly and among different groups, and individual experiences may differ.


Brown University

Regarding safety on campus, Brown University is often considered one of the safest Ivy League colleges. 

The university’s comprehensive safety program includes a 24-hour campus police force, emergency alert systems, safety education, and outreach initiatives. The campus is also well-lit, and security personnel are visible and accessible. 

While no campus can guarantee complete safety, Brown’s safety measures and low crime rates have contributed to its reputation as a secure and welcoming environment for students, faculty, and staff.

Campus Food

Cornell University

Cornell University is widely regarded as having one of the best campus food scenes among Ivy League colleges. With over 30 dining locations across its sprawling campus, Cornell offers various culinary options to suit different tastes and dietary needs.

The university is also committed to sustainable and locally sourced ingredients, with many of its dining halls and cafes featuring farm-to-table menus. 

Furthermore, Cornell’s meal plan system allows for flexibility and customization, so students can choose the meal plan that best suits their lifestyles and preferences. 

Cornell’s diverse and high-quality food options have contributed to its reputation as a top destination for foodies among Ivy League universities.


Harvard University

Regarding location, Brown University, Columbia University, Harvard University, and the University of Pennsylvania are often considered prime locations among Ivy League colleges. 

Brown is situated in the vibrant city of Providence, Rhode Island, which offers a rich cultural and artistic scene. 

Columbia is located in the bustling Morningside Heights neighborhood of New York City, with access to world-class museums, theaters, and restaurants. 

Harvard is located in the historic and picturesque city of Cambridge, Massachusetts, just across the river from Boston. 

Penn is situated in the heart of Philadelphia, with easy access to the city’s many historical landmarks and cultural attractions. 

Each university offers unique and exciting opportunities for students to explore their surroundings and engage with the local community.


Yale University

According to our research, Yale University is often considered to have the best dormitories among Ivy League colleges. Yale’s residential colleges offer a unique and immersive living experience, each with its distinct culture and traditions. 

The dormitories are spacious, well-equipped and offer a range of amenities such as laundry facilities, lounges, and study spaces. 

Yale’s residential college system also fosters a strong sense of community and belonging among its students, with social events and activities organized by its student-led councils. 

Overall, Yale’s residential college system and top-notch dorm facilities have contributed to its reputation as the best Ivy League college for dorms.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, Ivy League college dorms can vary significantly in quality and amenities. Our rankings have considered factors such as student life, safety, campus, party scene, walkability, campus food, location, and dorms. 

Based on our research, Yale University has emerged as the top Ivy League college for dorms, with its unique residential college system and well-equipped facilities. 

It’s worth noting that other Ivy League colleges, such as Brown University and Columbia University, have excelled in multiple categories. At the same time, Yale University, Brown University, and Columbia University all fit into four out of the eight categories we examined. 

Ultimately, choosing the best Ivy League college dorms is personal, with different students valuing different aspects of their living experience.

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