Despite its convenient location along a well-traveled path, San Miguel Arcangel Mission is an often-overlooked photographic treasure. Due to recent earthquakes, the old mission used to be in a desolate condition. The mission church was long closed with the thread of an immanent collapse looming over it. Today the church has reopened, owing to extensive restoration projects funded through donations.
The decay that threatens the very existence of this mission also makes it one of the most appealing ones to photograph. Crumbling walls, rusting ornaments, and peeling paint give it an authentic old feeling that some other missions lack. While you walk through the old mission remnants, you can feel the age of the buildings.
Simply plan a stop on your next trip along Highway 101, you won’t regret it.