I walked all around the grounds of the missions, of course, and found a section of the El Camino Real that appeared to me just exactly as it might have a couple hundred years ago, minus the traffic of padres, soldiers, and indians.
From San Francisco.............................175 south on Hiway 101. Take the exit marked Jolon Road (G14). There is also a historical sign announcing this exit.
Once on Jolon Road, travel 18 miles. Take a right on Mission Creek Road. You will travel through the Fort Hunter Liggett military base entrance gate. Please continue 5 miles. The Mission is on your left with a well-marked sign. See map.
Of all Spanish California missions, San Antonio de Padua is the most faithfully restored. This is what a mission really looked like. Artifacts of the missionaries and their neophyte's are on display.
Frescoes of their daily life, and the painstaking restoration of the mission's workings make it a valuable and educational museum.
All that's really different here from the old days is the Indians ...
The mission is in the Diocese of Monterey
Mass schedule is:
Daily in side Chapel 7:30 am with the Franciscans
Holy Days 7:30 am and 7:00 pm
Saturday (Sunday Vigil) at Lake San Antonio Visitor Center, S.Shore
Winter hours: 4:00 pm.........
Summer hours: 7:00 pm
Sundays in Mission Church 10:00 am
I love the old way of building with the adobe bricks, with the irregular lines. The light and shadow here is really striking, I think.
One of the things that is a surprise is to come across a peacock wandering around the overgrown courtyard of the mission.