San Juan Capistrano Mission

First off, I hope you are now figuring out that I’ve been piecing together all of my ZILCH pictures with my recent posts and the following more to come. Thanks for the blog love on that post.
I was never a big fan of California Missions but San Juan Capistrano completely changed that. I felt like I bit my tongue as San Juan Capistrano completely busted my chops. It then urged me to visit 4 more Missions in under 2 weeks.


For one, it has the most popular bells of all missions.

I was paying good attention to the tourist guide when she talks to the group about the bells. Don’t mark my words, I did not have a badge. I was not part of the tour. I was only eavesdropping. πŸ˜› For what it’s worth, I’m glad they didn’t call me out on it. I wast even being nonchalant about it. I was seriously eavesdropping standing close to the tour guide. πŸ˜€ Based on what I had overheard, they ring the bell whenever there’s a burial in the community. They do it no matter how many deaths are there.
The very neat thing about San Juan Capistrano is the ruins of this great stone church where parts of it survived when an earthquake devastated the place.


They aptly named it “Great Stone Church”, πŸ˜€ and dubbed by architects the “American Acropolis”.
San Juan Capristrano also has the distinction of being home to the oldest building in California still in use….


… a chapel built in 1782. Known alternately as “Serra’s Chapel”. Junipero Serra sounds like a stand-up guy in his days to have his names appearing all over the places in California. An old post – What Are You Looking At?

Out of the 5 Missions I visited, San Juan Capistrano has the best looking courtyard thus far.




The real attention stealer … a Koi and lilies pond.



San Juan Capistrano raised the bar high. Plus, it saved my sanity when my travel destinations that week didn’t satisfy me. I just saw the sign while driving and I immediately took the exit. *wink* It most certainly changed my misconception that I wont like going to missions. I now hoping to see all 21 California Missions during my stay here in California.



Guess what after my coffee have in every foot of its posts. I can picture premdev going to all these coffee shops with a camera handy, taking pictures of the brew. The write-ups are very direct to the point, just short and sweet. A light, lively and charming blogger, premdev always took a light approach. Then, every blogpost closes with a purchase of coffee anywhere premdev has gone to. My most favorite – a visit to venice canals. Sit back, relax and get caffeinated!


More Linkage from previous Featured Blogs:

Debra of Breathe Lighter loves to dig the pasts. She is very well aware of the many California history including its missions. She recently posted about San Gabriel Mission.

LuAnn of Paint your Landscape goes in-depth with the history and other facts about San Juan Capistrano.

Categories: California, Travel

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64 replies »

  1. Wonderful photos! And I enjoyed the info too. I’m a lifelong evesdropper, began as a young child listening in on my mother’s conversations. And I have developed it into an art, lol, so I can completely relate! Amazing what you can learn when you keep your ears open and act innocent. πŸ™‚ Are you coming to my neck of the woods, the Monterey Bay area, again? There’s the Carmel Mission here, but I’m sure you already know that. Maybe you’ve been there already (I just saw this post) and I missed it. I’ve been there many times for different reasons, (although not recently) but have taken very few pictures. After reading this post and getting inspired I’ll be heading there soon, maybe I’ll even run into you there! πŸ˜‰

    • Thanks for your perusal on the post. πŸ˜‰ I hope the weather in your end gets better. California is getting more and more heat now during the day.

  2. Wow.. So pretty these pics are.. My fav is the water lily pic and the courtyard one. πŸ™‚ And of course even the bells, since most of the post talks about them.. πŸ˜‰ Also, much more information gathering happens with eavesdropping because one pays full attention and then some which may not be the case when one is forced to listen to something. πŸ˜€ Even if only I say so, I’m a true believer of that.. hehe..

    • Agreed! You sure lose focus and determination when you’re forced. And that’s why work has been dull for me lately πŸ˜€ .
      San Juan Capistrano has many stand outs among other missions.

  3. I know this from Luann’s post of course. But I love your take on it and your sensational images!
    And reading this made me realise that multiple galleries look much better than clumping the entire lot in one!! Thank you Rommel πŸ™‚

  4. I am a fan of your blog and would like to nominate you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. If you wish to accept (and I won’t be offended if you don’t) here are the rules: 1) display the award logo, 2) link back to the person giving the award, 3) state 7 things about you, 4) list 15 blogs that you wish to nominate, 5) notify these bloggers of the award and the rules. Go here to see the person that awarded me: HAPPY BLOGGING

    • Thank you for the great recognition Lyle. I received the award plenty of time, and I appreciate each and every of any kind of recognitions I get. Thanks.

    • Trial and error …. Just trial and error. That works when you have ample amount of space in your memory card. Bwahahaha. That candle shot … it took me like 3 visits to that chapel to get what I wanted. πŸ˜‰ i’m crazy like that. πŸ˜†

  5. Thank you for the nice mention, Rommel. And I love your photos of the Mission. It is a beauty…and I love San Juan Capistrano! I have a funny memory of being at the Mission when my mother-in-law was living. She was a history and art teacher who absolutely loved the missions. One time we took her with us and as we were walking around she had so much to share that a small group started following us thinking she was a docent. I will never forget that. I think she may be partly responsible for why I have such a strong interest. Great post…you do a good job of following history yourself! πŸ™‚

    • I would so follow your grandma. I would even take her home if I had to. πŸ˜€ it is just appropriate that I mention your blog as you know more than I do.

  6. San Juan Capistrano looks special and glorious from your lens! The lilies pond shots take my breath way.
    Looking forward to seeing all 21 California Missions here. πŸ™‚ Thank you for the wonderful tour, Rommel!

    • All 21 missions… That is something Amy. I don’t think I can handle. They are scattered all over California. And the state of California is the size of my mother country, Philippines.

  7. It’s been awhile since I’ve visited any of the missions, but I do remember San Juan Capistrano being one of my favorites as well. Not sure about the bells, but I think I preferred the bell tower for the San Diego mission. Now i’m going to have to go image search them and make sure!

  8. I’ve only been to the Mission San Diego de Alcala, and that was for a fourth grade field trip in the 90s. I found it quite beautiful, even if the smells in the chapels were very disturbing. I love these photos of this Mission.

  9. This looks like a wonderful place to visit, Rommel. You can learn quite a lot from eavesdropping. πŸ™‚ The lily pond and courtyard are magnificent. Thanks for sharing your zilch pics. πŸ™‚

  10. What a beautiful place. If I were to visit California, I think I will include the missions. I first learned about them when I visited SF and San Jose years ago. Then, I learned more about them in one of my son’s Social Studies lessons. Your photos are lovely – when I get the chance, I will show my boys your photos as part of their learning. πŸ™‚

    • Ow, the WP blog links I gave at the end will help for histories. Missions are extra fascinating because they’re there for spreading religion, much like we had in the Philippines.

  11. It is through this spur of the moment detours and surprises do we encounter the most amazing places and people. Beautiful place with a rich history. Stunning images Bro and thanks for the adventure.

  12. You certainly picked the best scenes from this location. It’s very peaceful in the courtyard and fun to stroll around the grounds. Sometimes there are musicians playing out front, lending a festive atmosphere. Glad you enjoyed your time. Were the swallows back?

  13. Really enjoyed this post. Such beautiful captures, particularly the chapel! You might enjoy San Xavier del Bac Mission in Tucson, AZ, whenever you get over that way.


  14. What? I didn’t even know you featured me in here! thanks so much for the shout out… oh my! I am so glad you do it for us small bloggers. I was so pretty busy that I only got the time to visit you and the rest. Thumbs up and keep it going…. I now have a reason to visit San Juan Capistrano when a cousin moves in there on March.

    • Well, hello there Featured Blogger. πŸ˜€ I see from my number of ‘Clicks’, you had quite a few clicks. Small bloggers!!!??? You is not small. You is HUGE!
      If anything, I just find out that Dana Point is way so close from San Juan Capistrano. You might wanna consider Dana Point as well if you head to San Juan Capistrano.

      • Years ago, I joked with my wife that we when we retire, we will take time to stop at all the Brown Signs along the road. Then, when I started blogging, I called my travel blogs “Brown Signs”. Then, I found that in Britian, their are Brown Sign clubs. So much for an original idea. πŸ™‚

  15. well, glad your guardian angel took the wheel and got you to the mission…haha! now we get to view your lovely visit–eavesdropping and all–and write to tell you…well done, Rommel!! my fave photos are the bells and lily/koi pond. very, very beautiful. ❀

    • Aha, so it’s that naughty guardian angel keeping me occupied with all the ganders then. I shall steal his/her schedule so I don’t have to wonder every time.

      • :)…smiling angel looking @ Rommel with stolen schedule in his hand…and angel just waits for next trip with another bigger, more improved improv trip plan. :p

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