A little history on the missions . . . The missions (San Jose, Concepcion, San Juan Capistrano, and Espada) were built by the Spanish starting in the late 1600s and continuing through the mid 1700s. The sole purpose of the missions was to spread Catholicism, but they were also a refuge for the indigenous people of South Texas against foreign invaders, and were places where they could learn trades and skills, as long as they devoted themselves to Catholicism and Spain. The Mission Trail, which runs along the San Antonio River, extends 8 miles long and connects the four missions. So, in addition to just visiting the mission, it's fun to ride bikes along the trail to visit each of them or go for a run and see the missions as you go. And, if you don't have your own bike, San Antonio's bike share program has stops along the route, so you can just rent a bike and go!
Here are a few pictures from the three missions that we've had a chance to visit.
Biking along the Mission Trail is one of the funnest rides we've done since we've been here. (Although, in nice weather it can be slow-going at times due to so many other bikers and runners on the path as well.)
So . . . next time you have an open Sunday afternoon, I definitely recommend taking a picnic to one of the mission grounds. Or, spend the weekend and explore all four!