A California Icon
Junipero Serra was the founder of California, and his famous statue can be seen in San Mateo. Unlike most devotional statues, Junipero Serra statue is a bit awkward or cartoonish. Junipero Serra was a controversial figure as many claim that he brought Catholicism to the state of California. Another popular belief about the man was that he was an imperialist, foisting his religion upon the natives, but there is another group who perceive Junipero Serra as a bold missionary who helped develop the state of California.
A Short History of the Statue
Digressing from the history of the person, Junipero Serra statue was erected in 1976 along Junipero Serra Freeway or Interstate 280 with the assistance of Department of Transportation. The statue stands of the base on which the names of the missions Serra found are carved. In the statue, Junipero Serra is pointing towards the Pacific Ocean, which nobody till date has understood why. Unlike most of the popular statues, statue of Junipero Serra emanates a rough appearance, as if the statue isn’t fully complete.
Louis DuBois in collaboration with the California Department of Transportation designed and funded the statue. If you live in San Mateo, then you can pay a visit to Junipero Serra Statue, which is near the visitor’s park in the interstate rest area. The statue sits on one knee on a grassy hillside, so beware of the rattlesnakes, which usually sneak out of the grass. The statue definitely has a historic value regardless of the opinion of some people who consider Junipero Serra as an embarrassment. However, the statue stands proud and witnesses a large number of visitors every day.
Visiting the Statue
Many controversies surround Junipero Serra and his statue, yet the place receives a copious amount of traffic, which shows people are fond of their history. If you are planning to visit this statue, then you need to head towards Interstate 280. Junipero Serra Statue has been a popular place for people to stop and rest before they move towards the north to San Francisco.
You can easily park a car on the side of the freeway and check out this amazing piece of art and history that many people have different opinions of. You will get clean restrooms near the statue and a place where you can have your pets unwind a bit. Overall, a decent stop for those who are interested in history and culture of California or simply those who are heading towards San Francisco and want to straighten up their back and legs a bit.