San Antonio Missions

The grounds of the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park https://www.nps.gov/saan/index.htm are open to visitors. Inga Cotton has tips for planning a safe and educational trip with your family.

A few weeks ago, Inga shared about the greenway trails system
https://youtu.be/kEnPepJctN0. Those trails are a great way to access the missions. You will find beautiful public art at each portal from the Mission Reach of the San Antonio Riverwalk to the missions. On March 28, Inga and her kids parked at Mission Espada and walked the round trip to Mission San Juan. She shared some photos from that visit.

At this time, the buildings at the missions are still closed, but you can check the park website and social media for updates. The Archbishop recently announced that services will resume this weekend at Catholic parishes around town; however, as far as we know, the churches at the missions are not included. Some national parks are making plans to reopen, like Big Bend in June.

There is still a lot to see while staying outside and walking the grounds. Both of Inga’s kids studied Texas history this past year (in 4th and 7th grades), so she is planning visits to historical sites this summer to keep the learning going. Walking around and looking at the architecture and the landscape creates an opportunity for conversations about the role the missions played in bringing cultures together and shaping San Antonio culture, as we talked about with the Briscoe Museum’s curator Ryan Badger https://youtu.be/a_A7vr3Q1AI

It’s possible to visit all the missions in one day, but Inga recommends spreading it out. Even if it feels arbitrary, putting things on your calendar like, “Tuesday—Mission San Jose” is good for your mental health. It gives you something to look forward to.

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