If you’re like most Canberrans, you can’t hear the word “Googong” without thinking of the township’s quirky marketing campaigns. (For the uninitiated, Googong’s advertisements regularly invite families to “go Googonian,” and move to what its marketing team claims is a friendlier, more welcoming neighbourhood.)
But unless you live over the border in Googong or know someone who does, it’s difficult to know how reality compares. So, if you’re thinking about a visit (or a move!) to Googong, here’s what you need to know.
Googong is a self-contained township with five neighbourhoods: Googong North, Googong East, Googong South, Googong West and Googong Central. Googong North was the first neighbourhood to be built, with Googong Central currently under development.
And while Googong is just over the border in NSW, it’s reasonably central – just 16km from Parliament House and 4km from Jerrabomberra.
Googong township’s first residents moved in in 2014. But its history dates back much further. The first homestead was built in 1845, and the area is significant to at least five local indigenous groups.
Shops and eateries
Most of Googong’s five neighbourhoods will eventually have a local shopping centre.
In the meantime, residents head to Googong North Village Centre for their shopping, which, according to Googong’s website, has an “IGA supermarket, liquor store, cafe, hair and beauty salon, Our Place Childcare, Domino’s Pizza, Club Lime gym, and a Community Centre.”
Shopping centres at Jerrabomberra and Queanbeyan are also just a short drive away.
Places of interest and things to do
With more than 23 percent of Googong dedicated to open spaces, there are plenty of activities on offer that make the most of the great outdoors.
- Visit Googong Dam. Picturesque Googong Dam is a great sport for bushwalking, mountain bike riding, sailing and even fishing. For information about bushwalking routes, fishing spots and other activities at Googong Dam, download the official ACT Government guide.
- Join in a community event. With a strong focus on nurturing a sense of community, Googong hosts heaps of events throughout the year – from Christmas carols in Beltana Park to Rural Fire Service Open Days and the ever-popular Halloween-themed Boogong. Event details are posted on the Googong website.
- Take the dogs for a run around. Googong North is home to two well-maintained dog parks (as well as three playing fields, eight playgrounds and two tennis courts).
Playgrounds and parks
As you might expect from a township that pitches itself as kid-friendly, there are eight playgrounds in Googong North – with more planned in future neighbourhoods. These include:
- Gumnut Playground (Yerradhang Nguru Park on Aprasia Avenue). There are playgrounds, and then there’s Gumnut Playground in . It’s an adventurous series of gumnut-shaped pods connected by climbing ropes and bridges. There are also swings, table tennis tables and a barbecue area.
- Lovegrove Park (Aprasia Avenue). Lovegrove Park is an all-abilities playground. Like most of Googong North’s playgrounds, it has barbecues and tables as well as play equipment.
- Duncan Fields (Duncan Loop). Highlights of Duncan Fields include a playground with mini trampolines and a half court basketball court.
- Beltana Park (Beltana Avenue). Ideal for younger children, Beltana Park is adjacent to Club Googong and the tennis courts.
Qcity Transit provides public transport services between Googong and Queanbeyan on weekdays (route 837). From Queanbeyan, it’s a short bus ride into Canberra.
Route 830 to Civic, which departs Queanbeyan Interchange, stops in Kingston, Manuka, Barton and Russell. Other routes include the 831 to Woden via Canberra Hospital, and the 834 to Brindabella Business Park via Fyshwick and Majura Park.
Don’t forget that Qcity Transit has a different ticketing system to Transport Canberra, which means you can’t use your MyWay card on Qcity Transit buses.
The Anglican School Googong is a co-ed school for students in preschool up to Year 9. It will eventually open for students all the way up to Year 12.
There are also plans to build a public primary school and public high school in Googong in coming years.
Why the locals love it
Googong residents say they appreciate the township’s focus on family and community. It’s an affordable alternative to buying land on the western fringes of Canberra, without sacrificing access to amenities like schools, hospitals and entertainment.
For those who are patient enough to wait, Googong will also eventually be relatively self-contained, with most of the essentials like schools, shops, eateries and playgrounds.
- Median age: 32 years
- Median weekly household income: $2813
- Median weekly rent: $480
- Houses vs. apartments: 99.6% houses
- Suburb sales record (excludes land sales): $1.2m in 2011
Source: 2016 Census.
Want to find the latest real estate listings for sale and rent in Googong? Zango can help you find them:
Do you live, or have you previously lived, in Googong? 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.