Carmel Mission, Carmel

Carmel Mission, Carmel (must see)

Carmel Mission is a restored Roman Catholic mission church in Carmel Valley. Founded in 1770, the mission was founded by Franciscan missionaries. It was relocated to its present location the following year. Its full name, Mission San Carlos Borromeo del Rio Carmelo, is named for Archbishop Carlo Borromeo and the Carmel River.

There is much controversy surrounding the early days of the mission. Franciscans converted Native Americans to improve their baptismal rates. It is thought that about 900 tribal members were baptized and then forced into labor on the mission grounds during the 18th and 19th centuries. They were starved, tortured and left to die from diseases. This practice is thought to have ceased around 1833 when the church was secularized.

The mission was abandoned and fell into disrepair in the mid-19th century. The roof collapsed in 1852 and the mission was left in ruins. The Roman Catholic church took control of the land once again and rebuilt the mission, and then added to it over the course of several decades. It is said to be one of the most authentically restored missions in California. The mission was designated as a National Historic Landmark on October 9, 1960. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966.

Today, the mission is used as a place of worship and gatherings. Concerts, lectures and art exhibits take place at the mission. Visitors are welcome to tour the museum, find souvenirs in the gift shop and tour the mission itself. They can also attend mass along with the local congregation.

The museum, gift shop and grounds are open Wednesday and Thursday from 10 AM to 4 PM, Friday and Saturday from 10 AM to 5 PM and Sunday from 12:30 PM to 5 PM. Those wishing to attend mass as the Carmel Mission should consult the website as mass times are subject to change.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Carmel. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Carmel Mission on Map

Sight Name: Carmel Mission
Sight Location: Carmel, USA (See walking tours in Carmel)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Carmel, California

Create Your Own Walk in Carmel

Create Your Own Walk in Carmel

Creating your own self-guided walk in Carmel is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Historical Buildings Walking Tour

Historical Buildings Walking Tour

Back in the early 1900s, little about Carmel-by-the-Sea rivaled the appeal of the magnificent ocean front. What is seen now as a quaint, European-like town on the coast of Central California, started off at the turn of the last century with the planting of 100 pine trees right down Main Street – today's Ocean Avenue. This was followed by the arrival of the young architect, Michael J....  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.8 Km or 0.5 Miles
Carmel Introduction Walking Tour

Carmel Introduction Walking Tour

Carmel-by-the-Sea, frequently referred to as Carmel, was founded as a mission in 1770 by Franciscan priests. Though the area was settled in small numbers before that date, it was fully colonized by priests Junipero Serra and Juan Crespi. Along with being the site of the mission, the city was capital of California until 1849.

Eventually, Carmel became a haven for artists who formed a colony in...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.8 Km or 3 Miles
Wine Tasting Walk

Wine Tasting Walk

While it takes no more than a dozen minutes to stroll from one corner of Carmel to the other, it is quite easy to get lost. There are no street numbers in Carmel but the wine bars and bottle shops are plentiful, and the tasting rooms are even more so – enough to keep visitors busy for days!

This charming city is indeed a bona fide wine tasting destination at its best! Regardless of your...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.7 Km or 0.4 Miles