Twilight Road Trip

By Karin Sheets

Special Needs TravelingMom

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Bella’s house, set in “Port Angeles” in the movie, is located about 40 minutes from Portland, Ore.

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The Carver Café looks exactly like it does in the movie, even if the menu is a bit different.

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Home to the Cullen family in the movie, the owners of this house let “Twilight” fans take pictures from the edge of their driveway.

Entice Tweens with a ‘Twilight’ Movie Road Trip to the Northwest

The first episode in the “Twilght” movie saga was set in Forks, Wash., but it was filmed in Oregon and southwest Washington. As a family of Twi-hards, we decided to celebrate my youngest daughter’s 13th birthday with a “Twilight” road trip.

My daughter, V, is a sweet girl who happens to have a few challenges. She’s blind, can’t walk, but communicates in her own way, and loves to be a part of the action. Travel not only opens the world to her, it gives her a way to connect with other people. That is priceless to me.

Day 1:  Locations for Bella’s house, Port Angeles, School of Dance and Forks High School

About 40 minutes from Portland in St. Helens, you’ll find Bella’s house and the setting for the “Port Angeles” scenes, including “Petite Jolie,” the shop where Bella helps Jessica and Angela find their prom dresses, the parking lot where Edward rescues Bella from a group of boys, the Bloated Toad restaurant where Edward reveals his mind-reading abilities, and Thunderbird & Whale bookstore.

Bella’s house looks just like it did in the movie, with the addition of a friendly note tacked to a tree that reminds visitors this is a private residence so we shouldn’t peek in windows. It kind of made us feel like paparazzi. At first this made us a little uneasy, but we soon we got comfortable with the whole stalking thing and headed back to get a picture of us standing in front of the house.

On our way back to Washington, we stopped at Kalama High School, used for the outside scenes of Forks High School.

With the sun beginning to set, we headed into Portland for our final stop of the day, the site of Mimi’s School of Dance, the setting for the final confrontation between Edward and James. In the movie this is set in Arizona, but the exterior shots were filmed at the Yale Union Laundry Building in Portland.

We spent the night where the cast slept during filming: at the Portland Hotel Monaco.

Day 2:  Locations for café, prom and Cullen’s house exterior scenes

First stop: the Carver Café, where Bella and her dad ate dinner a couple of times.  It looks exactly like it did in the movie. Don’t expect to order Charlie’s favorites; those items aren’t on the menu. But the chocolate chip pancakes and bacon were terrific.

Next stop: the View Point Inn, the scene of Bella and Edward’s prom.  The inn burned in a fire last year, but the stunning views of the Columbia Gorge remain.

Then it was on to the sleek, modern Cullens’ house, home to Edward and his vampire family. The family that lives here welcomes Twilight fans to take photos — from the end of the drive way. You can still see plenty from this vantage point.

We spent the night at the lovely Ocean Lodge at Cannon Beach. My daughter wasn’t up for going out to dinner, so we got take out and ate it on our veranda with better seats than any restaurant could provide.

Day 3: Location for La Push surfing and beach scene

The La Push beach scenes were filmed 200 miles away at Indian Beach. The path down to the beach is not accessible. We made it anyway, but even from the parking lots, the stunning views are worth the trip.

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