Through the rest of 2012, you'll need to drive along this tour. But starting in 2013, the restoration work should be finished on the... more » mission trail. To check on the progress, visit San Antonio Mission Reach Project's website below.
The word mission usually connotes religion. It's true that San Antonio's missions revolved around religion and faith, but it doesn't describe the importance or full scope for any of them. Though intentionally created to spread the Catholic faith, missions are not churches. The church is merely one building among several in any mission. Each complex served as a separate, unique community.
All four churches — Mission Concepción's, Mission San José's, Mission San Juan Capistrano's, and Mission Espada's — have active Catholic congregations. Though the congregations haven't been continuously active since the 1700s, many of today's members are direct descendants of the Indians who built the churches.
In addition to the families, the missions served as the foundation for much of what you'll see in Texas today. The architecture, food, culture, textiles, and more all began in the missions in one way or another. Each is different and several served as important sites during the Texas Revolution.
When you visit the missions, be careful. These are historic structures and the masonry may not be able to hold your weight (such as if you decide to try and walk atop a retaining wall). Also, some structures may not be accessible due to restoration work or otherwise.
2202 Roosevelt Avenue
San Antonio, Texas 78210
210-534-8833 Main number
Visitor's Center: 210-932-1001 less «