Sometimes you just need to get away. Maybe you need to relax, recharge, refresh, reset your mind, body and spirit or just take a breather. When I need one of those days, I head for a quiet spot – not necessarily a tourist destination.
One of those places for me is Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens. On the grounds of Mission San Luis Rey de Francia, aka Old Mission San Luis Rey, in Oceanside, California, this beautiful and quiet place breathes life back into a weary soul.
Fortunately for me, I don’t have to go very far because the Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens are located in my county – San Diego County. Founded in 1798 by a Spanish padre, Mission San Luis Rey is one of the 21 missions of the California Mission System. Located up-and-down the coast of California, the missions were established to colonize California and secularize the native Indians.
Just walking the beautiful grounds of this restored mission will renew anyone’s spirit! Charlie and I’ve been to this mission many, many times and I never get tired of exploring the Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens. Spring is a beautiful time of year to catch the mission grounds in all of their glory. Here are some beautiful photos from our last visit:
Close-up of the main fountain located in front of the church on the grounds of Mission San Luis Rey de Francia. In the background is a life-size bronze sculpture of Jesus carrying the cross with Mary watching her son in agony. Notice the water splashing everywhere! Also in the background is an Indian Pow Wow happening of the grounds on the day we visited.
Two children enjoying the massive fountain.
The fountain overlooking the main road to Mission San Luis Rey de Francia.
Gorgeous Aloe succulent in bloom on the grounds of Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens.
Turtles and Koi in the Koi Pond at Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens.
Another turtle and koi happily swimming in the Koi Pond.
Two turtles sunning in the Koi Pond.
Craftsman-style lanterns line an outdoor corridor at the Junipero Serra Center on the grounds of Mission San Luis Rey de Francia.
Madonna and Child sculpture caps the roofline of a building at Mission San Luis Rey de Francia.
Crown of Thorns flowering in Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens.
Lavender swaying in the breeze in Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens.
A colorful concrete and tile bench to sit a spell.
Purple Freeway Daisies blowing in the ocean breezes.
Crows hanging out under a shady tree in the Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens.
One crow decides to fly someplace else…
Maybe up into this tree bursting with pine cones?
But definitely not on one of the massive cactus that pepper the grounds!
Another Madonna adorning the side of one of the buildings at Mission San Luis Rey de Francia.
Close-up of the angel holding this Madonna up!
Gorgeous red geraniums…
purple Princess flower basking in its glory…
yellow hibiscus nestled against a building…
and purple statice…don’t you just love Spring?
If you missed my earlier posts about Mission San Luis Rey, now’s your chance to catch-up!
I’m lucky to live in an area that has so many beautiful places of solitude to visit to clear a busy mind! And, many of them are free! If you visit Old Mission San Luis Rey Gardens and the rest of the Mission, take a picnic. They have picnic tables scattered about the grounds and you’ll want to stay awhile.
What are the must “to-go” places in your town where you seek solace to de-stress?
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