Visiting the San Antonio Missions

Today is Travel Tuesday.  A lot of people who visit San Antonio make their way over to the famous Alamo, but what they may not know is if they are in for a short drive, they can see and tour four other Missions.  All of which have their own unique beauty.
Generally most add the Alamo to this tour, I am not showing this part, but if you'd like to read about the Alamo, you can visit this page HERE.

Additionally if you want to hop on bike, you can visit them and get to them via the Mission Riverwalk Hike and Bike Trail.  I wish I could say I toured them this way.  But because I was running a marathon the next day, I actually drove between the Missions.

I love the cactus roof!

This is one of the original wall paintings that have still lasted all these years since the 1700's

However, if you run the Rock & Roll San Antonio Marathon, you'll pass almost all of them on foot:)  Of course, you won't want to stop in and visit them then, so I suggest taking a few hours if your in the area and heading over to see them.

This was one of my favorite photos, I didn't even realize when I took it, but if you look
at all the lines and shadows, its like art, LOL  I love it!

The parks visitor center which is operated by the National Park Service is at the San Jose Mission.  If you want to start your trip there, you can pick up the directions and information on each of the different missions so you will know what to see and do when you get there.

Inside Mission Concepcion

Mission San Jose
This one is the largest missions.  One thing to note a mission although referred to as a church, they were not churches, as much as they were communities for those who lived in them.

Mission Concepcion
This one looks pretty much the same way it did originally.  It is actually the oldest not yet restored church in America.

Mission Espada
This was actually the very first Mission in Texas and very much resembled Spanish villages.

Mission San Juan Capistrano
This Mission was a complete self sustaining community in its time.  Farming, Orchards, Artisans, and even cattle.  Not all missions were this well off during their time.

Sorry, this one was under construction while I was there so that is why the fence

The best part is, you can see them all and tour them all for free, they do not charge you for this:)

I could go into the entire history of the missions, but I'll let you experience that first hand if you are ever in Texas around the San Antonio area.  The buildings are beautiful, and it is quite amazing to learn about these Native American settlers.

Have you been to the San Antonio Missions before?  Did you enjoy the experience?
Is this something you might add to your trip itinerary if ever in San Antonio?

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