San Francisco de Assisi Mission Church, Ranchos De Taos

4.5
#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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San Francisco de Assisi Mission Church Reviews
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772 reviews
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4.6
TripAdvisor
  • The simple beauty of this mission church, in many ways, is a testimony to the humility of St. Francis & the spirit of unadorned, kind-hearted faith. A visit to the church made me want to go back to.....  more »
  • We were in Taos for the holidays and decided to visit the historic Saint Francis Church in Ranchos de Taos. We also visited the gift shop and purchased a few souvenirs. The church is beautiful inside....  more »
Google
  • They were actually having church here the day we were there. Mass was over and people were leaving. So after the service we got to go in and enjoy this famous Church even more. I was surprised when we arrived at the church how it was so closed in by other buildings and things. Most pictures I see make it appear like there's nothing around it. That's not the case. So if you're going to take a picture find that spot to stand in. There are also quaint little shops to buy things at. One Shop sells wooden sculptures by a well-known New Mexican artist.
  • One of my favorite places. Still as beautiful and humbling as the first time I saw it 70 years ago. A marvelous piece of history and culture. I come here every time I travel close to this corner of the world.

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