The location: Ensenada.

Q. What is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. Ensenada, Mexico.

Q. Where is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. Ensenada, Mexico (and just outside of Ensenada).

Q. When did we see it on the show?

    A. In Episode 2 (of season 4), "The Gringos".

    Following Marissa's death, Julie hires a private investigator to locate Volchok, and learns that he is in Ensenada. She then feeds the information to Ryan, knowing he will go after Volchok. And he does, with a reluctant Seth tagging along.

    Seth tries to stop Ryan from killing Volchok, and informs the Cohens what he is doing. As Ryan goes from bar to bar in Ensenada, looking for Volchok (but having little success finding him), the Cohens arrive in Ensenada to bring him back.

    Finally, Seth learns where Volchok really is, but he gives Ryan the wrong address, while he (Seth) goes to Volchok and warns him that Ryan is coming after him.  Volchok flees, Ryan is frustrated, and the Cohens arrive to escort Ryan back to Newport.

Q. What is it actually in real life?

    A. It is not Ensenada, Mexico.  In fact, it's not even Mexico.  It's a collection of Los Angeles locations that the producers strung together to create the illusion of Ensenada.



Q. Where can I find it in real life?

    A. The OC's version of Ensenada was made up of five L.A. locations.

    Four of them were clustered together in an area northwest of Exposition Park and the USC campus . That's near the border of the Pico-Union/West Adams neighborhoods. The one remaining location was in the Valley.

    Here is a list of the OC's "Ensenada" locations:

    (Click on any of the five locations above for details & addresses.)

    Here is a Bird's Eye view aerial photo the general area, with all of the "Ensenada" locations marked.

    And here is a map link with the same labels.

    [ Warning: Some neighboring areas have experienced a high crime rate: exercise reasonable caution. ]

Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?

    A. See the individual pages (above) for details about how I found the locations.

    However, I can say here that my task was made easier by the fact that four of the five locations were grouped together in the one area (near USC). Leonardo's restaurant was the easiest to find (I just used the Yellow Pages), and once I realized they had been filming in that part of town, it allowed me to begin my other Ensenada searches there. I should also add that the nearby USC campus itself was used as a location in the same episode, standing in for Brown University campus.

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