Built between 1718 and 1755, the five Catholic missions—San Antonio de Valero (the Alamo), Mission San José, Mission Concepción, Mission San Juan Capistrano and Mission Espada—represent the largest concentration of Spanish colonial missions in North America.
Within these walled compounds, Franciscan priests built self-sustaining communities and provided sanctuary for the Texas natives.
Today visitors can explore the grounds of these extraordinary buildings through free guided tours, or simply take in the peaceful atmosphere on their own schedule. Four of the missions are located along the river and can be accessed by portals on Mission Reach, which provides eight miles of hike and bike trails and plenty of places to stop and enjoy the views.
Slideshow: San Antonio Missions
All photos ©Mark Greenber