Dunlop can seem like a bit of a mystery to many Canberrans. Lying at the north-west border of the ACT, it’s not a suburb that people often drive through or stumble across. But you might be surprised to find out just how much this quiet gem has to offer.
Tranquil surrounds and wide-open spaces? Check. Value for money? Definitely. Quiet? Without a doubt. And while Dunlop might be perched on the edge of Canberra and close to nature, the family-friendly suburb is not far from Kippax Fair and Belconnen Town Centre as well as schools and restaurants.
Thinking about visiting or moving to Dunlop? Here’s what you need to know.
Dunlop is a suburb of West Belconnen that was gazetted in 1993. It is bordered by Charnwood, Macgregor and Fraser. The suburb is named after renowned Australian surgeon, Sir Ernest Edward ‘Weary’ Dunlop, and its streets are named after inventors and artists.
Dunlop was designed in a series of estates, or small areas with distinct features. The estates include The Meadows, Ginninderra Ridge, Ginninderra Ponds, Dunlop Hills and Jarramlee Park.
Shops and eateries
Dunlop has a small shopping centre with a Woolworths supermarket and bottle shop. Upgrades to improve amenities and access are planned in 2020.
Charnwood Shops is also nearby, with a Woolworths, newsagent, takeaway, coffee shop and other variety stores. Charnwood Turkish Pide is popular with locals. Regal Charcoal Chicken is not just known for its excellent barbecue chooks; it also has a fan following for its delicious potato scallops.
Kippax Fair is a short drive away. The mid-sized shopping complex in Holt features a Woolworths, Aldi, newsagent and petrol station, as well as a variety of speciality stores.
Dunlop is a ten-minute drive from Belconnen and its major shopping centre which has all the amenities you’d expect in a large Westfield.
Places of interest and things to do
- Look for rare birds at West Belconnen Pond. Dunlop residents are lucky to be surrounded by gorgeous natural scenery, including the West Belconnen Pond which is home to several rare bird species.
- Join the local Landcare group. Jarramlee Park Landcare represents a group of active members concerned with water quality and biodiversity management in Jarramlee Park Estate, in Dunlop.
- Visit one of Dunlop’s many playgrounds. It’s easy to get out-and-about with the kids in Dunlop, with eight playgrounds across the suburb which are accessible by footpaths and cycle paths.
Parks and playgrounds
Dunlop Grasslands Nature Reserve is a popular destination for walkers, birdwatchers and nature lovers. It contains endangered Natural Temperate Grassland and Yellow Box-Blakely’s Red Gum Grassy Woodland, supports the endangered Golden Sun Moth and is one of a few known habitats of the rare and locally endemic Canberra Raspy Cricket. There are several grassy tracks and the Bicentennial National Trail also passes through the reserve.
There are a wide array of playgrounds in Holt, which cater for kids of all ages and have a variety of equipment for the kids to enjoy, as well as grassy areas, rocks to play on, and shaded sections.
Charnwood ovals and netball courts run along Dunlop’s border.
Dunlop is served by Transport Canberra bus route R2. It takes in Fraser, Macgregor, Kippax, Belconnen, the City, Barton, and Fyshwick.
For those who need to drive, major road Ginninderra Drive runs through part of the suburb and continues through to Belconnen, towards the city.
There are no schools in Dunlop. Nearby schools include:
- Charnwood-Dunlop School – a public school for preschool to Year 6 students, located in Charnwood.
- Melba Copland Secondary School – a public school for Year 7 to Year 12 students, located in Melba.
- Brindabella Christian College – a Christian school for preschool to Year 4 students with a campus in Charnwood.
- St Thomas Aquinas Primary School – a Catholic primary school for Kindergarten to Year 6, located in Charnwood.
- St Francis Xavier College – a Catholic school in Florey, for students from Years 7 to 12.
Why the locals love it
“Dunlop is a suburb of Belconnen that continues to provide home owners and investors alike with fantastic opportunities to purchase property. The now well established local shops, the Ginninderra Ponds, the many bike paths and walking trails and the feeling of space and been close to nature continue to be major factors in why people move to the area. Dunlop really is a place where kids can feel safe to play and for those with pets, there are plenty of options to get them out of the backyard and burn off some energy.” – Sam Faulks, via Homely.
- Median age: 33 years
- Median weekly household income: $2,252
- Median weekly rent: $400
- Houses vs. apartments: 90.2% houses; 8.8% townhouses, 1% apartments
- Suburb sales record (excludes land sales): $945,000 in 2019
Source: 2016 Census.
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Do you live, or have you previously lived, in Dunlop? What are your favourite things about the suburb? What advice would you give to people considering moving there? Share your thoughts in the comments below.