Rathcoole Co Dublin is within city reach but has all the calm of the country
Access to the great outdoors, a mature housing stock and plenty of places to go and things to do means Rathcoole is a village that’s well worth a look
There is plenty to keep you occupied in this southside village and, if you want, town is just a hop and a skip away. Illustration: Aoife Dooley
At a 16km drive from Dublin city centre, Rathcoole is just about the last village you'll find on the Dublin side of the N7. It’s a bustling village of around 4,500 people with a lively community and neighbourhood spirit.
“I've always lived in Rathcoole,” says Emma Kinsella, a primary-school teacher who grew up in the village and chose to buy in Peyton, a new development, with her husband. “One of the main draws for me is how close it is to the city centre,” she says. “I like being in the countryside while also being close to Dublin city – and I love being able to hop on the Luas and go into town.”
“It’s a great location,” says Kinsella. “For the airport, for town, for gigs, for restaurants… while also having the advantage of being in the countryside, and being so close to Naas.”
Its good access links to Dublin city centre are not the only draw of this southside Dublin spot; for a relatively small village, it has one of Ireland's most famous pubs – “An Poitín Stil is a great pub,” Kinsella effuses – and it can also lay claim to one of the biggest, and arguably nicest, Avoca shops and restaurants in the country.
“My favourite spot would definitely be Avoca,” says Kinsella. “It's a very, very big draw. It's a beautiful restaurant, has great takeaway food and beautiful home-made meals to cook at home. The coffee is delicious – and they do babyccinos for kids!”
It is a firm part of the Kinsella family's weekend routine. “At the weekends we might go down to Avoca for breakfast, then get a takeaway coffee to bring into Rathcoole Park and wander around,” Kinsella says. “The park is really nice - ideal for kids because there's a very safe playground and lovely walkway, and it has one of the tallest slides in Ireland, apparently. The kids love it. It's really nice to meet friends and go for walks there, as well.”
How do I get here?
Rathcoole has long been served by the 69 Dublin bus, departing from Aston Quay in the city centre on an hourly schedule and ending in Rathcoole, via Clondalkin. There is a 69N Nitelink service at weekends. Commuter train services can be accessed from Hazelhatch and Celbridge train station, which is 12 minutes' drive away and offers a 26-minute travel time to Heuston Station.
There is also a coach service that goes to The Square in Tallaght, as well as the nearby Luas stop at Citywest, a seven-minute drive from the village of Rathcoole itself.
Rathcoole is well served by schools, with two primary schools in the village offering both Irish – Scoil Chrónáin – and English – Holy Family National School. There is also a large secondary school in the village, Holy Family Community School, on the Kilteel Rd, whose famous alumni include singer-songwriter Dermot Kennedy, jockey Ruby Walsh and former Den TV presenter, Kathryn McKiernan.
Rathcoole Educate Together National School is a new addition which opened in September 2020 on Fortunestown Lane in nearby Saggart.
Where's good to live?
Rathcoole has a large number of housing developments and estates, some which date back to the ‘70s and ‘80s, while others have been built and added on to in recent years. Kinsella recommends Peyton, the development she live in. “It's a lovely new estate,” she says. “As for the older, more established estates, Hillview and Beechwood Lawns, near the park, would be some of the nicest,” she confides.
The most exclusive locations to live here are those that are slightly more rural. “Up the hill, towards the forest – and in Redgap, they'd be the best places to live, the most coveted,” says Kinsella.
Outside for exercise
Rathcoole's countryside feel – which endures despite its having a Tesco Metro, Spar, Centra, several pubs, and a handful of hair salons, takeaways and a sizeable park – lends itself to a lot of weekend leisure time, too, which has come in especially handy throughout 2020, says Kinsella.
“During lockdown, we discovered some really nice off-the-beaten-track forest areas, on the way to Luggwoods, the forest area between Rathcoole and Saggart. It's very magical. We told the kids we were going to the North Pole; it very much has that feel.”
One of Kinsella's favourite walking tracks is “the Hill, a beautiful walk that leads right up to the forest”, she says. “It's really stunning, with beautiful views of Dublin.” That might just be the biggest draw of all: the ability to look upon Dublin as if from a distance, while knowing you're never too far away if you should fancy a trip into the city.
Making a move
Sharon Dillon is a Bank of Ireland mortgage specialist working in the Rathcoole branch. “However big Rathcoole has grown, it has managed to maintain and preserve a real village atmosphere. The people are friendly, welcoming and there’s no shortage of a smiley face! It has great amenities for young and old and it’s just a lovely place to live,” she says.
The lender is Bank of Ireland Mortgages. Lending criteria and terms and conditions apply. Over 18s only. Mortgage approval is subject to assessment of suitability and affordability. A typical mortgage to buy your home of €100,000 over 20 years with 240 monthly instalments costs €615.79 per month at 4.2% variable (Annual Percentage Rate of Charge (APRC) 4.3%). APRC includes €150 valuation fee and mortgage charge of €175 paid to the Property Registration Authority. The total amount you pay is €148,114.60. We require property and life insurance. You mortgage your home to secure the loan. Maximum loan is generally 3.5 times gross annual income and 80% of the property value (90% of the property value for first-time buyers). A 1% interest rate rise would increase monthly repayments by €54.02 per month. The cost of your monthly repayments may increase – if you do not keep up your repayments you may lose your home.
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