I loved visiting the Mission La Purisima Concepcion State Historic Park. The journey here was definitely out of the way. I had to leave Highway 101 and cross over to Highway 1 and some other random streets to arrive here. I found myself turning the wrong way 2 times before finally heading out to the mission from the town of Lompoc. I drove past Vanderberg Air Force Base knowing that heading straight to the guard gate was the wrong way too. I did eventually find the mission and I was in for a big surprise arriving to the grounds of the park.
After paying an admission fee to enter I discovered that I needed to exchange my flip flops for tennis shoes so that I could walk the dusty paths around the mission. La Purisima Concepcion Mission is a “living history” museum bringing visitors back in time to when the Spanish friars were here. It was something very incredible to see and relive going back to 1787 when this mission was founded. I try not to be political about the Spanish friars coming to America and converting the locals of this land to their religion, but I will say that I don’t necessarily believe that it was the best way to make friends. With that being said it was somewhat spooky and erie walking around the grounds imagining what life was like here in the 18th century. I actually felt like there were ghosts following me around and stayed out of some of the darker rooms.
I took too many photos on my visit and managed to leave the mission after spending one hour checking out La Purisima. Here is some of what I saw. There really was a lot to see!
I knew this wasn’t your typical mission when I saw people about the go horseback riding in the park where the mission is located.
The Visitor’s Center
Inside the misson
This mission really had it all- livestock, living quarters, a sun dial, a lavanderia, a docent in Spanish padre attire.. and the list goes on and on and on. If you only visit one of the California missions I would say make it that one. INCREDIBLE.