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Happiness for Beginners: Where the Feel-Good Movie Was Shot

Netflix’s “Happiness for Beginners” is a romantic comedy film that is based on Katherine Center’s 2015 novel of the same name. It follows a 32-year-old schoolteacher named Helen Carpenter who is persuaded by her brother to sign up for an adventurous hiking and camping trail when she struggles even a year after her divorce. When she learns that her brother’s obnoxious best friend Jake is also going on the walk, what started out as a rare opportunity for her to gather herself and gain a new perspective on life, turns into something unexpected.

But as Helen hikes farther, she comes to the conclusion that sometimes one needs to go truly lost in order to find herself. Vicky Wight, who also wrote and directed the comedy, is joined by Ellie Kemper, Luke Grimes, Nico Santos, Ben Cook, Shayvawn Webster, and Esteban Benito in the film’s impressive ensemble cast. The majority of the story takes place along the Appalachian Trail in the woods, where Helen discovers love and a new outlook on life. You might be interested in learning where “Happiness for Beginners” was filmed given the change from the city to the woods and the intriguing backdrop. If so, don’t worry—we’ve got you covered!

Happiness for Beginners Filming Locations

Connecticut, particularly Fairfield County, served as the backdrop for the movie “Happiness for Beginners.” According to sources, the rom-com’s primary filming started in September 2021 and ended in November of the same year. Connecticut is a great place to film a movie like “Happiness for Beginners” due to the abundance of hiking paths there. Without further ado, let’s take you on a tour of every individual site that can be seen in the Netflix film!

Fairfield County, Connecticut

The majority of “Happiness for Beginners'” crucial scenes were filmed in Fairfield County, which is found in the southwest of the state of Connecticut. Before Helen departs to join the adult camp in the woods, the film crew primarily sets up camp in and around the city of Stamford to shoot the city scenes. All of the scenes involving Helen’s home and the external vistas of the city appear to have been filmed in the City That Works.


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Helen embarks on a nearly 2,200-mile journey along the Appalachian Trail, which passes through 14 states on its way from Georgia to Maine. According to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, it is the world’s longest hiking-only trail. Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine are among the states that the trail travels through if we start in the south and travel all the way to the north.

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The popular trail scenes may have been filmed upon sections of the Appalachian Trail that are located in Connecticut’s Fairfield County. In actuality, 52 miles of the entire trail—almost entirely along the mountains to the west—are within the state. The Appalachian Trail is seen throughout the majority of the film as the protagonists, particularly the lead Helen, camp out during their trek and develop as humans.


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The group of hikers in the movie also had lightweight tents, tent hammocks, or tarps, much like in real life. In addition to the path, it’s possible that additional areas in Fairfield County will appear in the romantic comedy film. The Western Connecticut Youth Orchestra, the Housatonic Museum of Art, the Connecticut Grand Opera, the Greater Bridgeport Symphony, and several others include Franklin Street Works. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants 2, The Big Wedding, Broadcasting Christmas, and Rachel Getting Married, among others, all feature locations in the area.

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