I have always been fascinated with the old whitewashed spanish buildings, so getting to check out one of the California Missions was great. The sense of history is really present here. It looks very peaceful and even glamorous now, but the reality of everyday life was a lot different when this mission was in use back in the day.
San Diego was founded in 1542 (as San Miguel) by the Spanish. They did how ever have a hard time “controlling” the native indians, so they laid out a plan to build 21 Mission stations up along the California coast, with the purpose of converting the Indians to Catholics. They started in San Diego and this station was the first to get build.
In 1769 this San Diego Mission was founded and named Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala. And I have to say the architecture is beautiful. I do how ever feel different about how the California Missions were run, and how they controlled the native indians. They were very hard on them and used them as work force and very much with fear as a motivator.
I find original Indian culture fascinating and I am so frustrated with how it has been wiped out and has almost disappeared. It is daunting how superior we (mostly) “White man” acted and with so little appreciation of other cultures. I am happy it has changed, even though it can still get better, just sad that we lost so much culture through those 200 years.
The San Diego Mission isn’t big, and you don’t need more than 1 hour to tour the place. Entrance was 5 USD and you can check out open hours and directions at missionsandiego.org