Unforgettable Experiences in an Extraordinary Place
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Visit Mission San Luis
|Hours and Admissions|
Tuesday - Sunday
Closed on Mondays, New Year's Day, Easter, July 4, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Day
AdmissionAdults - $5.00
Seniors (65 and over) - $3.00
Children (6-17) - $2.00
Active Duty Military - Free with ID
Friends Members - Free
Site Map of Mission San Luis
Time Travel. Escape. Unwind.
A visit to Mission San Luis transports you back to 1703. Your destination is a community where Apalachee Indians and newcomers from Spain lived together.
Hear the ring of the blacksmith's hammer, smell traditional foods being cooked over an open fire, and walk the plaza where the Apalachees played their traditional ball games. Experience the largest historic-period Indian building found in the Southeast and greet the friar at the church. Learn about a soldier's life at the fort, and explore 300-year-old artifacts excavated onsite. Or just enjoy the beautiful outdoor setting with a picnic lunch or nature walk.
Come escape to another time, and share the spirit of Mission San Luis with friends and family!
What is Mission San Luis?
From 1656 to 1704, San Luis served as the principal village of the Apalachees and was the Spaniards' westernmost military, religious, and administrative capital. Mission San Luis was one of over 100 mission settlements established in Spanish Florida between the 1560s and 1690s. It was home to more than 1,400 residents, including a powerful Apalachee chief and the Spanish deputy governor. (For more history and archaeology, please visit the History pages.)
In recognition of its historical significance, San Luis received designation as a National Historic Landmark in 1960. Today Mission San Luis is the only reconstructed Spanish mission in Florida. As a living history museum it is devoted to sharing the stories of its former Apalachee and Spanish residents. Knowledge of life at San Luis over three centuries ago comes from intensive archaeological and historical research—the site is the most thoroughly investigated mission in the southeastern United States.
Join us in exploring native culture and Spanish colonization in a meticulously recreated landscape!
Mission San Luis Artifacts and History
Visit the exhibit gallery, where the history of this 17th-century western capital of Spanish Florida is interpreted. See replicated archaeological profiles, a three-dimensional topographic site map, and Apalachee and Spanish artifacts discovered at Mission San Luis over decades of archaeology.
Spanish Colonial Art and Artifacts from the Calynne and Lou Hill Collection
Also on display in the exhibit gallery are period devotional objects in the Roman Catholic tradition, including santos (three-dimensional carved figures) and retablos (two-dimensional flat panels/enclosures on which images of saints were painted). Similar items were probably used in the altarpiece of the 17th-century Mission church.
Images of North Florida by Charles F. Manning
In the Mission San Luis Visitor Center are oil landscape paintings by Charles Manning. These paintings reflect the artist's response to the geography, flora, and history of our region. Paintings are available for purchase.