Sabrina Collier

Updated January 16, 2020 Updated January 16

QS Best Student Cities ranking: Joint 85th

Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay, is India’s most populous city and one of the largest cities in the world, home to over 18 million people. Located on the west coast at the site of a large natural harbor, Mumbai is India’s commercial, financial and entertainment capital, home to the Bollywood film industry and the highest number of millionaires in India.

The city is full of contrasts and extremes – great wealth in close proximity to large slums, glittering skyscrapers and ancient markets, fancy restaurants and simple-yet-mouth-watering street food. All of this, plus the general chaos of big-city life, might take some getting used to, but Mumbai has much to offer.  

Mumbai climbed 14 places in this year’s Best Student Cities thanks to improved ratings in the desirability and student rank categories, with its buzzing cultural scene, great weather, beaches and entertainment making it probably one of India’s most fun cities. There are activities and sights to suit any interest, including great food, live music, traditional festivals and theater, as well as some of India’s best nightlife.

Although it’s somewhat more expensive to live in Mumbai compared to other areas of India, the city offers the potential of a higher standard of living. To keep costs down, follow the locals to shop at nearby markets and street food vendors – also the best way to explore the full diversity of the city’s flavors.

Mumbai is also home to some of India’s most well-respected universities, including the University of Mumbai, one of the largest universities in the world with around 550,000 students. The language of instruction at Indian universities is usually English.

Internationally ranked universities in Mumbai

Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IITB)University of Mumbai

More about Mumbai

Number of universities ranked by QS


Highest-ranked institution

Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IITB) (152nd)



Average international fees (at ranked unis)


Desirability rank


Employer Activity rank


Affordability rank


Student View rank


To find out how each of the above categories is calculated, view the methodology

This article was originally published in February 2017 . It was last updated in January 2020

Written by

The former Assistant Editor of, Sabrina wrote and edited articles to guide students from around the world on a wide range of topics. She has a bachelor's degree in English Literature and Creative Writing from Aberystwyth University and grew up in Staffordshire, UK. 

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