San Francisco de Assisi Mission Church, Ranchos De Taos

4.6
#2 of 6 in Historic Sites in Taos
San Francisco de Asis Mission Church is a historic and architecturally significant church on the main plaza of Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico. Built between 1772 and 1816, it is one of the finest extant examples of a Spanish Colonial New Mexico mission church, and is a popular target for photographers. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1970.
San Francisco de Asis is located about 4mi south of Taos, New Mexico, at the center of the main plaza in the unincorporated of Ranchos de Taos on the south side of New Mexico State Road 68. It is a large adobe structure, about 120ft in length, with a cruciform plan. An adobe wall extends from the back of the church and one of the transepts to form an enclosed rectangular area on the building's south side. Adobe buttresses project from several portions of the main walls, including architecturally distinctive beehive-curved buttresses at the ends of the transepts. The roof is formed out of adobe laid on planking supported by timber vigas, set in distinctive doubly corbelled mounts. The vigas are also more closely spaced than is typically found in other examples of Spanish colonial architecture. The entrance is flanked by a pair of bell towers.
The mission at Ranchos de Taos was established in the early 18th century. Construction on this church began around 1772 and was completed in 1815 by Franciscan Fathers; its patron is Saint Francis of Assisi. It was the center of the fortified plaza, which provided for protection against Comanche attackers. The church has undergone several instances of restoration, including in 1967, when all of the ceiling vigas and doors were replaced with reproductions.
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
694 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Incredibly inspiring Taos classic subject of Georgia O'Keeffe painting -- see it and the Taos Pueblo, endless unpretentious beauty of Taos County, NM  more »
  • This active church, an 18th century adobe Historical Landmark is beautiful on the inside and out. You are not allowed to take photos of the inside, and it is as if you stepped back in time. Right off ...  more »
  • Worth a stop. From the street you are seeing the rear of the church, so drive into the back and take a look. Pretty cool. Notice the old businesses in the back area as well. This is a 15-30 minute sto...  more »
Google
  • The Visitors Center told me it was a beautiful, historic church, but it was nothing to write home about. If you go to Taos make sure the Pueblo is open; there isn't much else there to see.
  • The architecture of this place is incredible. We didn't get to go inside as we visited after hours, but just the outside is beautiful.
  • Beautiful place to visit. Lots of history in a small place. Dennis Hopper home is just a cross the street. The church is amazing and beautiful with original artwork.
  • Beautiful!! Fully functioning piece of history.
  • Such History for the Taos area. A must see.
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