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Best known for the golden dome atop its Main Building (which was the inspiration for the football team's iconic helmets), the University of Notre Dame was first founded in 1842 between two lakes—St. At 218 feet high, the Gothic, stained-glass-filled chapel is the tallest university chapel in the U. Most of the oldest buildings at "IU," in the center of the campus, were built by the post-Depression Works Progress Administration from locally quarried limestone, and they encompass buildings in the Art Deco and Art Nouveau styles.Between the leafy school grounds and the town around it, there are nearly 1,200 miles of bike and running trails, and the tranquil "Jordan River" (named for the college's first president, not after the river in the Middle East), runs through campus.The location provides students with beach views and activities like yachting and kayaking; the lake is even a plus in the winter, when it turns frosty and magical.Waterfront perks aside, Northwestern's 240-acre campus stands out for its historic buildings.Set on Lake Virginia in balmy Winter Park, Rollins College's buildings are primarily Spanish Mediterranean in style, fringed by palm trees and bougainvillea.There's one structure that stands apart from the other architecture on campus, though: The 1886-built Pinehurst Cottage dormitory. Rand, a native of Vermont, the rough-hewn wooden structure recalls the New England of his youth.To achieve “higher learning” requires a bit of inspiration—consider the looming spires and manicured quads of Oxford and Cambridge. S., some of America’s oldest (and prettiest) colleges, such as Princeton and Yale, employ the Collegiate Gothic look, while other universities have more contemporary architectural styles that bring a bit of West Coast innovation—think Stanford's Mission Revival and Pepperdine's Mediterranean Revival.Some campuses would be breathtaking without any manmade structures at all: The oceanside Brigham Young University-Hawaii, in Laie, for one, is pretty close to paradise.
The Sacred Heart Chapel, a 1955 Spanish Gothic-style church with richly toned stained-glass windows of biblical figures, is one of its most treasured buildings on campus.
The Quad certainly earns major bragging rights, flanked by stunning Wait Chapel (pictured) and Reynolda Hall.
But the green spaces are the true stars here—just walk to the Reynolda Gardens, which has 125 acres of wetlands, fields, forests, and walking trails and a four-acre formal garden with a greenhouse.
Plus, it has the advantage of being bordered by St. Fun fact: The campus landscaping was designed by Olmsted, Olmsted, & Eliot, the same firm that designed New York City's Central Park.
The 500 acres of Wellesley College are so naturally beautiful and serene, you'd never guess the campus was only 12 miles outside of the hubbub of Boston. designed the campus in 1921, purposefully integrating the architecture into the landscape rather than break up the buildings into quads, which is how most colleges were designed at that time.Brigham Young University's Hawaiian outpost may be just 35 minutes from busy Honolulu, but you'd never know that thanks to the peaceful scenery of the northern Oahu coast.