Thursday, October 28, 2010
San Juan Bautista is one of my favorite California missions to visit in the central valley. Almost completely intact, it has maintained that almost back to original times feeling, when the mission was still functioning, minus the hordes of tourists. One of the main reasons for its well preserved nature is due to the local residents care in preserving the mission, plaza and the town to all its beautiful glory. The church still functions today for all religious celebrations. Those interested in getting a glimpse of real missionary life should visit the mission and museum where you will get to see artifacts, re-created rooms to all the various parts of the mission including the church with its beautifully hand painted walls and alters. This is definitely one of the gems of the California Missions.
The old plaza really feels like a square of old times with the main buildings of the day surrounding the central grounds, a few hotels, a stable and some civic buildings. The mission stretches on one whole side with the church with the beautiful arcades of the mission adding comfort and amazing vistas to the plaza.
The front of the mission contain this sweet smelling garden of antique and hybrid roses in a circular garden with beautiful bronze sculptures of father Serra and a native Indian. Both sculptures created by a local artisan and is placed to add dynamic composition to this aromatic garden.
If you are ever in the Central Valley on the way to Monterey, go and visit San Juan Bautista mission and the surrounding plaza and town, its a true jewel off the beaten path of typical visits to Old California.
This is my contribution to Fertilizer Fridays, go visit Tootsie for more at http://www.tootsietime.com/