Mission San Diego Quadrangle

San Diego Tour Map

You exit the museum into a small courtyard off the quadrangle. A beautiful Tamarisk tree sits here. None of the references indicate the tree has any great significance; it’s just a nice picture.

San Diego Tamarisk Tree

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

Around the corner is the Saint Bernardine Chapel (La Capilla). Before going in, look above the door. There you will find four statues of people significant to the Mission.

San Diego Chapel Entry

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

St. Francis

St Francis Statue

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

St. Bernardine

St Bernardine of Siena Statue

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

Saint Serra

Saint Serra Statue

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

Padre Jayme

Padre Jayme Statue

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

[Side Note: This is the one place the tour tape appears to be incorrect (providing the plaques under the statues are correct). The tape says Saint Didacus is the second statue and Saint Bernardine the third; the plaques indicate the statues identified as above.]

San Diego Chapel Interior Panorama

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

The interior of the chapel is a unique combination of Spanish and Mexican items. The stone floor came from Our Lady of Guadalupe Basilica in Mexico City. The altar and choir stalls along the walls come from a Spanish convent and date to the 1600s.

San Diego Chapel Altar

Picture taken 12:00pm 23 Jul 2002

Across the quadrangle from the Saint Bernardine Chapel is a bronze rendition of the Thirteenth Station of the Cross where Jesus is taken down from the Cross.This is one of some 60 statues placed around South California by the Via Dolorosa Society in order to stimulate thoughtful devotion about the birth of Christianity. The Society encourages you to touch and be touched by these statues.
San Diego Mission Pieta Display

Picture taken 12:10pm 23 Jul 2002

As you walk around the quadrangle don’t forget the center. The Mission fountain is Mexican granite and is a reminder of the aqueduct system that shifted water from the Mission Dam to the Mission.

San Diego Fountain

Picture taken 12:10pm 23 Jul 2002

Finally, along the wall leading back to the gift shop you will see a large area of excavation (in 2002). This is the result of University of San Diego student projects dating back to 1966 and continuing. The area is believed to be part of the monastery.

San Diego Excavation Area

Picture taken 12:15pm 23 Jul 2002


The California Landmark sign is on the front of the Mission between the campanario and entrance to the gift shop.

San Diego Landmark Sign

Picture taken 10:45am 23 Jul 2002

Mission San Diego de Alcala

On Sunday, July 16, 1769 Fathers Juipero Serra, Juan Viscanaino and Fernando Parron raised and blessed a cross to establish Alta California’s 1st Mission. Relocated from Presidio Hill to this site in August 1774 the Mission was the Mother of those founded in California by the Franciscan order. The present buildings, first completed in 1813, were rebuilt in states from 1915 to 1931 after many years of deterioration. They have been in use as a parish church since February 1941.

California Registered Historical Landmark No. 242

Originally registered June 10, 1936. Plaque placed by the State Department of Parks and Recreation in cooperation with the Diocese of San Diego and Squibob Chapter E Clampus Vitus, Sunday, July 16, 1989.