Sign Up
Newsletter Signup
Free Fodor's Newsletter

Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.

Fodor's Weekly: Your expert travel wrap-up
Today's Departure: Your daily dose of travel inspiration (coming soon)

San Francisco Sights

Mission Dolores

  • Dolores and 16th Sts. Map It
  • Mission
  • Religious Building/Site/Shrine

Updated 05/05/2014

Fodor's Review

Two churches stand side by side at this mission, including the small adobe Mission San Francisco de Asís, the oldest standing structure in San Francisco. Completed in 1791, it's the sixth of the 21 California missions founded by Franciscan friars in the 18th and early 19th centuries. Its ceiling depicts original Ohlone Indian basket designs, executed in vegetable dyes. The tiny chapel includes frescoes and a hand-painted wooden altar.

There's a hidden treasure

here, too. In 2004 an archaeologist and an artist crawling along the ceiling's rafters opened a trap door behind the altar and rediscovered the mission's original mural, painted with natural dyes by Native Americans in 1791. The centuries have taken their toll, so the team photographed the 20-by-22-foot mural and began digitally restoring the photographic version. Among the images is a dagger-pierced Sacred Heart of Jesus.

The small museum here covers the mission's founding and history, and the pretty little cemetery—which appears in Alfred Hitchcock's film Vertigo—contains the graves of mid-19th-century European immigrants. (The remains of an estimated 5,000 Native Americans lie in unmarked graves.) Services are held in both the old mission and next door in the handsome multidome basilica.

Read More

Sight Information

Address:

Dolores and 16th Sts., San Francisco, California, 94114, United States

Map It

Phone:

415-621–8203

Sight Details:

  • $5, audio tour $7
  • Nov.–Apr., daily 9–4; May–Oct., daily 9–4:30

Updated 05/05/2014

Advertisement

Map View

Map of



What's Nearby

  • Hotels
  • Restaurants
  • Sights

See all sights in San Francisco

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?

Experience

Ease

Value

Don't Miss

Advertisement