San Miguel Arcangel (California Missions Series)

I have actually visited this mission twice. The first time I was unable to get inside because the church suffered damage from the quake that shook the place a few months prior to our visit. This second time, November 2010, I saw that the temporary fence placed around the facade of the church was no longer there, but we were just swinging by on the way home from a short holiday in the Central Coast.

Located on Old Highway 101 in San Miguel, 9 miles from Paso Robles, halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

1777 - July 25, founded by Padre-Presidente Lasuen, 16th mission, named for St. Michael, the Archangel.

1818 - Present church completed.

1821 - Decoration finished.

1834 - Last mission to be secularized.

1845 - Sold.

1859 - Returned to the church.

1901 - and 1928 - Main buildings renovated.

The original campanario still in use.

No more cracks in the facade.

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The corridor.

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Going in.

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View from inside looking out.

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The courtyard and fountain. The fountain was not part of the original mission architecture and is a concrete copy of one at Santa Barbara.
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Fray Junipero Serra.
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The cemetery.
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A little prayer/altar area by the courtyard
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This would be my entry for this week's MY WORLD.


  1. Wonderful photos. I'm fascinated by the architecture and the history.

  2. Ewok - sorry to comment as anon but I can't leave a comment otherwise due to the embedded comments format.

    I love California and I hope to see more of the state in the future. Thanks for a glimpse at the missions. I so want to visit a few on a future trip to CA.

    a.k.a Pagan Sphinx

  3. Thanks for sharing this beautiful mission with us. I really enjoyed your photos.

  4. Cameras in the restrooms too?

    Wonderful visit. Really enjoyable to see all those beautiful structures.

  5. Great tour!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

  6. I do love those old California missions! Your photos and history are terrific! Haven't been to one of them in a long time, your post/photos are the next best thing.!


  7. The architecture is so very different where you are. Your pictures give a good feel of the place.

  8. Ha, ha … glad you included the all important restroom. Your broad-view captures give a great sense of the atmosphere and the evolution of a building. I love when bricks show through broken plaster and the bells are beautiful. I wonder if they are now artifacts or sometimes ring for passersby.

  9. This is so Spanish Colonial, love it! All photos are great.

  10. Very nice photos. I love old missions like this, this one looks beautiful.

  11. Please grow the callas. if your weather suits, you just grow them once, and never have to take care of them again.

    Brides like crimson red, florist like yellow, but I like white.

    If you grow yours, and I happen to walk past, you would have to shoo me away for taking photos.

  12. I like such old structures and the atmosphere around them. Great shots.

  13. I loved looking at your pictures today over and over again. Having been educated by Dominican nuns, I enjoy any old Catholic sites. This one is beautiful. The architecture is so interesting. Nice photography.

  14. wow, these are just wonderful photos... thanks for sharing..

  15. This is much more elaborate then San Francisco Solano. It's quite a contrast.
    Nice photos, it makes me want to visit.

  16. Such lovely photos of a stunning place!

  17. The very distinct bells in every mission. Maybe a visit someday if traveling to SFO in the future.

    The weather was beautiful when you visited. Nice captures!

  18. Thanks for the tour. I love the aura of Europe around the buildings. I especially like the campanario. The word Fray reminds me of Noli Me Tangere :)

  19. oopps, im actually hoping to see a statue of san miguel. curious lang, how he looks like in california. hehe

  20. great series of pictures. the steeple looks gorgeous against the sky and great perspective of the corridor.

  21. wow! baroque and iconic. my type of church where the rustic pilars and walls are really beautiful. im quite impressed at how they preserved it.

  22. You did an excellent job of showing us this place. Fine individual shot with a very good variety of viewpoints and subjects. It would be hard to pick a favorite among so many good ones.

  23. Wow this project is great, your architectures sandwiched by people photos. How lovely it is to do these things, i love all your photos! However, i forgot if you are also ewok. thanks.

  24. Another postcard perfect series of photos! I love the feel of summer in classic settings like this.

  25. That's a great photo essay. (I'd missed this posts before somehow, so thanks for the link on your other blog.) There's a Franciscan mission in Tucson AZ known as the "White Dove of the Desert" that these pictures very much remind me of. They used the same architect I think ;>)..we love to visit these places. The one in AZ is still in use.

  26. i like the rustic feel of the fotos.
    its architecture are just amazing, esp its details. ^0^

  27. Very nice sequence of photos of the splendid Mission. I like so much your Mission series!

  28. nice host. great piece of Mexican architecture.


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