What are the Virgin River filming locations? For a drama series so tied to its location, the ways in which the fictional Virgin River is brought to life on-screen have remained somewhat of a mystery. In both the Virgin River novels and TV series, the fictionalised town of 600 is meant to be in north California.
Yet, while you might think the majority of Virgin River filming locations would involve the Golden State, that couldn’t actually be further from the truth: a lot of Virgin River, in fact, is filmed in Vancouver, Canada, and select areas of British Columbia. With its redwood trees and idyllic countryside, Virgin River feels almost dreamlike — and as original novel series author Robyn Carr revealed in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, that’s no accident.
“It’s idealized, it’s utopian, it’s the perfect small town,” she explained. “People always write and say, ‘Where is it? I want to go there,’ and I have to remind them that it only exists in our hearts and minds.” She added, “We can have that sense of community in our own neighborhood or school or church group or community center or library association. All we have to do is try to create it.” And that’s exactly what the production team for the Netflix series have done, right down to the upcoming Virgin River season 5.
Is Virgin River a real place?
Yes, Virgin River is a real place, but ironically, the series isn’t actually filmed there — and it isn’t where the story is set either.
The IRL Virgin River is a small tributary of Colorado River, straddling states like Nevada, Arizona, and Utah. The river is approximately 162 miles long, and according to What’s On Netflix, is around a 1500km drive from where the majority of the filming for Virgin River actually takes place.
Where is Virgin River filmed?
The majority of Virgin River is filmed in Vancouver, Canada, along with various places in British Columbia. According to Good Housekeeping, the most favoured filming spots for Virgin River over in British Columbia include Snug Cove in Bowen Island, Brackendalw, and Port Coquitlam.
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Also known as Hollywood North, Vancouver is a popular filming location for a variety of films and TV series. For example, according to Conde Nast Traveller, the Golden State has been the filming location for Riverdale, The Flash, and Supernatural among others.
That now infamous shot of the ‘Welcome to Virgin River’ sign in the first episode was, according to Conde Nast Traveller, filmed 75 miles east of Vancouver on Pioneer Avenue in Agassiz. Agassiz is a small, tight-knit community within Eastern Fraser Valley region of British Columbia, Canada, so it’s perfect for Virgin River’s Hallmark-esque small town vibes.
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Another place largely responsible for Virgin River’s idyllic backdrop, rich with woodlands and water is Burnaby in eastern Vancouver. Situated near the Fraser River, Conde Nast Traveller report that Burnaby Fraser Foreshore Park, which is on the banks of the Fraser River, is where we can find Paige’s food truck, while the dreamy Deer Lake Park is where you’ll find the home of mayor Hope McCrea.
.The series has a lot of iconic landmarks, like Jack’s Bar, Doc Mullins’ clinic, and Mel’s cabin. Exterior shots of Jack’s Bar are actually filmed at a real-life bar in Brackendale, which can be found north of Vancouver on the Squamish River. The bar, called the Watershed Grill, is a must-visit for any Virgin River fan — but don’t expect the inside to match Jack’s Bar in the show — interior shots are filmed at a local studio.
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Reportedly, the scenes in Doc Mullins’ clinic and Mel’s place of work are filmed south east of Vancouver in New Westminster. In real life, the clinic is a five-bedroom , Queen Anne-style mansion built in 1899. In Prohibition times, it reportedly acted as a Speakeasy and is known colloquially as Breezehurst.
And last, but not least, there’s Mel’s cabin. Built in the 1950s, the waterside cabin, which is surrounded by acres of greenery and overlooking the city, can be found in Murdo Frazer Park, in the North of Vancouver.
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