Port Angeles, Forks & LaPush Twilight Tour

So, after visiting Jesus in Spokane, and driving across to Seattle and spending a couple of days there, (read about that adventure here) we headed out to the ferry to take us over to Port Angeles, Forks and LaPush side of Washington.  We were in the area, we might as well, right?    Scott and Cole were not thrilled with the prospects, but Brittany was very excited to go visit all the places.

We were very surprised at how much Forks and Port Angeles have really embraced the Twilight fans, and all the attention their cities have gotten since the novels been published.  And in true Washington weather fashion, it did rain on us for a bit.  We hardly saw sun when we were on this side of the peninsula.

We spent the night in Port Angeles, as it’s the only town of any size on the Olympic Peninsula.  It’s also only 56 miles from Forks, WA, about an hours drive.  While here in Port Angeles, besides visiting Twilight tour spots, we visited Olympic National Park, and hiked the Marymere Falls trail.  That will be described more in another post.

Here are the spots we visited on our Twilight Tour:  (thank you, AfterTheBite!)

1.  Port Angeles – Bella Italia

This Italian restaurant has a menu that features specialty pizzas and seafood. It appears in the first novel in the series, Twilight, as “La Bella Italia.” In the book, Edward saves Bella from local muggers, and he tells Bella’s friends that he’ll drive her back to Forks. Edward and Bella decide to get some dinner at Bella Italia. It’s Edward and Bella’s first date.

Stephenie Meyer, the author of Twilight, and the rest of the books in the series, visited the restaurant, which has added mushroom ravioli that Bella ordered for dinner in the book to the menu.

Bella Italia - Edward & Bella's First Date

2.  Port Angeles – Lincoln Theater

This theatre is on the same street as Bella Italia, Port Book and News and Gottschalks, and is most likely the theatre that Bella went to see the Zombie movie with her high school friends.

Movie theatre that Bella and her friends watched a Zombie movie in

3.  Port Angeles – Port Book and News

In Twilight, Bella Swan walks from a department store, Gottschalks to a nearby book store to browse, but decides not to go in because it is too “New Age” looking for her. She gets lost, enters a dark alleyway, and a group of four men begin to follow her. She is saved from being robbed by Edward Cullen. While Port Book and News doesn’t fit the exact description of the bookstore mentioned in the book, it is just up the street from the Gottschalks department store and Bella Italia make it the best choice for a stand-in for the bookstore from Twilight.

Local Bookstore

4.  Port Angeles – Gottschalks

In Twilight, Bella Swan takes a drive to Port Angeles and shops at this Gottschalks, the only department store this side of Seattle. It’s a natural place for Forks residents to go to do some shopping.  When we visited, it looked like the building was up for sale, but in the window, there was a Bella cardboard stand-up, next to some prom dresses.

Local Dress Shop

5.  Forks Washington Visitors Center

While not mentioned in the Twilight series, this is a definite first place to stop at when reaching Forks.  It’s the town’s chamber of commerce, but has turned into a Twilight Visitors Center. The people here are very friendly, and speak “Twilightese” very well.  They even give you a self-guided tour map, so you can visit all the places in Forks, and a lot of the local shops that offer Twilight-inspired goodies.  Some souvenirs and apparel are also available here.

You can’t miss Bella’s truck parked out front, or Dr. Cullen’s lab coat inside!

Forks Visitor Center & Bella's Truck

6.  Forks Outfitters & Thriftway

Bella worked at Forks Outfitters, and they have a huge selection of Forks, WA souvenirs, hats, pajamas, shirts, you name it.  I couldn’t pass up getting a Cullens baseball shirt, one of my favorite scenes from the movie.  Next door is the Thriftway where they had a Twilight Zone set up in the front of the store with lots of souvenirs.

Thriftway and Forks Outfitters - Lots of Twilight souvenirs here

7.  Bella Swan’s House

In the Twilight Saga novels, Bella Swan lives with her father Charlie. This stop was likely created by the Forks Chamber of Commerce as part of their tours of local locations used in the books. When setting up the tours, they needed to select some local buildings to act as the Swan’s home and the home of the Cullen family. The homes in the book were never based on actual locations.

Teachers Kim and David McIrvin volunteered their home to represent Bella’s home. A sign was placed out front stating it’s the home of the Swans. It is likely selected because it’s one of the few two-story Craftsman homes in the city. In a twist of fate, the house has similarities to the fictional inside as well as outside; there is a room that is painted blue and there are yellow cupboards just like in the book.  It is a private residence, so you can’t go inside, but there is a sign outside announcing it as the “Home of the Swans.”

Home of the Swans

8.  Forks Community Hospital

In Twilight,  Carlisle Cullen, Edward’s “father”, is a doctor in Forks and works at the hospital. The complicated part is that Carlisle is a vampire himself, almost 400 years old, who has sworn not to take human victims. He’s a compassionate individual and this comes out in his chosen human profession of a physician.

Be sure not to miss his reserved parking spot in the parking lot!

Reserved Parking for Dr. Cullen

9.  Forks High School

No trip to Forks would be complete without seeing the spot where Bella and Edward first met. This is a real high school and home of the Spartans.

Forks High School where Bella and the Cullens attended

10.  Forks Police Station

Charlie Swan, Bella’s dad, is the local law enforcement officer.  The police station is connected to City Hall, and when we went in, they had a Twilight display which had a uniform shift from Charlie Swan, himself.

In the parking lot, there was a Forks Police car for picture-taking opportunity.

Forks Police Car

11.  The Cullen House

The Miller Tree Inn is a bed and breakfast in Forks that claims to be the real Cullens household. There are not many houses in Forks, that could even come close to being the Cullens house, so this is the closest you can find. If you decide to spend the night, ask for Bella’s Suite that has red and black bedding decor and roses.

Make sure you walk up to the front door, to see an Edward cardboard stand-up peering out from the window, and to read the whiteboard to see where the Cullens are.  When we were here, the Cullens were in the Amazon learning about wildlife in a tropical rain forest.  Even the mailbox has Cullen on it.

Cullen House

12.  La Push, First Beach, Quileute Reservation

La Push is an unincorporated community near Forks, Washington. La Push is part of the Quileute Indian Reservation and is home to Jacob Black.

Jacob Black meets his childhood friend Bella Swan at First Beach in La Push and famously tells her the legend about the Cullen family. In the Twilight book series, Bella spends a lot of time at La Push, and even almost drowns while cliff-jumping in La Push.

Be sure to look for the Treaty Line when driving down to the Quileute Reservation!

La Push is located off of Highway 110 about 15 miles west of Forks. Go all the way to the end to find First Beach and the driftwood logs.

First Beach in LaPush

To see other pictures from the real life city of Forks, and LaPush, click here!

For Port Angeles, click here!

To see pictures from the Twilight Movie Tour, click here to read this blog post!

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