“Somebody told me that this is the place where everything’s better and everything’s safe.”
*Disclaimer: All thoughts are my own opinions and recommendations and are not paid affiliations or ads.
If you are like me, then you have seen every single episode of One Tree Hill – maybe even more than once – and you have dreamed of visiting Tree Hill, North Carolina. Well not Tree Hill, but you can visit Wilmington which is the exact same location where the majority of One Tree Hill was filmed. The moment I found out Tree Hill was a real place, it went on my bucket list! Believe me when I say it is worth the visit!
You may not have time to take a week off to explore the beautiful little town of Wilmington, NC and that’s okay because it can be done in a weekend and you will still get the full experience! When my friends and I went, we left in the middle of the night and got to Wilmington around 4am. Luckily the front desk attendant let us check in 12 hours early so we could sleep before going out and exploring. Then we spent all day Saturday in Wilmington and all day Sunday at the beach.
I’ve compiled a list of 7 places a One Tree Hill fan can visit in one weekend and feel like you are a part of One Tree Hill’s history:
Brooke Davis’ House: 2314 Tattersalls Drive Wilmington, North Carolina
If you love the girl behind the red door then you will want this house with the famous red door on your list of must sees, and yes the door is still red. For me, finding Brooke’s house was a top priority. Brooke Davis is my favorite One Tree Hill character and seeing the home Brooke Davis grew up in made me feel as if I knew Brooke Davis. Also, if I remember correctly, the house to the right is the house that Anna and Felix lived in temporarily.
Tric/Red Bedroom Records: 1121 South Front Street Wilmington, North Carolina
Tric is the place where Peyton held her first all ages night and later added Red Bedroom Records. It is easy to imagine a packed parking lot and a line out the door. Tric isn’t located in town like you would think so don’t get concerned if it feels like you’re going the wrong way. You can’t go inside and the stairs that you see fans using in the show are now gone. There is another set of stairs, but they are blocked off. Tip: When you visit, be sure to bring a sharpie so you can leave your mark as a One Tree Hill fan by signing your name and writing your favorite quote at Tric as well as several other locations.
Rivercourt: U.S.S North Carolina Battleship Memorial Park Wilmington, North Carolina
“It’s the oldest story in the world. One day you’re 17 and planning for someday, and then quietly without you ever really noticing, someday is today, and then that someday is yesterday and this is your life.” -Nathan Scott
Unfortunately River Court was demolished years ago after filming ended and in its place is a picnic area with picnic tables. Stand where River Court once stood. Breathe it in. You can feel the history, the excitement, the stories. Then head over to the picnic tables and sign your name. If you look hard enough you may be able to find where some of the cast members have signed their names when they return to visit during Comic Con.
Tree Hill High: 610 North Front Street Wilmington, North Carolina
The building is actually on campus of Cape Fear Community College. You have to walk around to find the familiar area. The inside scenes of Tree Hill High did not take place here, but you will recognize the exterior where many conversations between Brooke, Peyton, Haley, Nathan, and Lucas among others took place. Stand under the iconic walkway and imagine you were a Raven.
Iconic Tree Hill Opening Credit Bridge: 6th Street Bridge on North Street and Hanover Street Wilmington, North Carolina
This bridge is the iconic bridge in the opening credit where you see Lucas dribbling a basketball and at the end of season 8, it is the last scene where you see Nathan and Haley’s son doing the exact same thing.
It is so incredible to stand on this bridge and see all the names and favorite quotes of fans and feel like you are a part of something bigger than yourself. It is also said that Sophia Bush herself has signed the bridge during one of her returns to Wilmington.
Riverwalk: Wilmington, North Carolina
If you have watched One Tree Hill then you know the Riverwalk is where Naley began when Nathan gave Haley a bracelet from a crackerjack box and said “Don’t say I never gave you anything”. Of course many other scenes happened on the Riverwalk, but this Naley scene is what made it famous. Take a box of crackerjack and relive the moment! You’ll be able to tell exactly which table is Naley’s table, but if I recall correctly, it is the last table in the row of tables.
From here, you can look across and see the USS Carolina Battleship which is where Rivercourt used to be.
Peyton Sawyer’s House: 1901 Chestnut Street Wilmington, North Carolina
The weekend my friends and I visited actually happened to be the weekend of the One Tree Hill Comic Con. Unfortunately we didn’t know and didn’t get tickets. However, home owners were prepared, especially at Peyton’s house. The girls that live here now were out front selling lemonade and other treats and offering to take pictures for fans visiting.
There are also souvenir shops Downtown Wilmington near the Riverwalk where you can purchase One Tree Hill souvenirs including Keith Scott Body Shop t-shirts, Clothes Over Bros t-shirts, and T-shirts with Lucas and Nathan’s jersey numbers to name a few.
There are so many other places you can visit to relive One Tree Hill including Karen’s Cafe, Lucas and Karen’s house, Haley James’ childhood home, Nathan Scott’s childhood home, Nathan and Haley’s apartment, Keith Scott’s Body Shop, and Nathan and Haley’s house to name a few.
Wilmington, North Carolina will always be Tree Hill, North Carolina to One Tree Hill fans. The funny part is how at home you feel while you’re in Wilmington. You truly feel like you are a part of the community, and everyone we met was so nice, both fans and residents alike.
Of course, when you’re this close to the beach, how can you not go? Going to Wilmington was the first time I had ever been on either coast and therefore the first time I had ever been to the beach. Wrightsville Beach was exactly what I imagined when I envision the beach – sand seeping through my toes, palm trees, sunshine, salty ocean breeze. I never wanted to leave. There are several beaches nearby including some that were seen on One Tree Hill.
“There’s only one Tree Hill and it’s your home.”