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San Juan Capistrano
San Juan Capistrano is a city in southern Orange County, California, USA, located approximately 23 miles southeast of Downtown Santa Ana.
This city was founded in 1776, and grew up as a farming community around the Spanish mission, known as St. John Capistrano, an Italian crusader. Many homes in this city are built in Spanish architecture.
The population was estimated as 33,826 according to the 2000 census. Tourism is a principal foundation of the economy in this city.
Preserving the City
The City of San Juan Capistrano is a unique community built on the historical Native American culture, Mission heritage with an agricultural past. The City itself has a Historic Preservation Fund, and there are various local historic preservation organizations, which are committed to the preservation of the city"s unique cultural heritage.
The City maintains a list of designated landmarks as well as a list of potential landmarks. The City also owns a number of historic properties and has a Cultural Heritage Commission which sponsors or participates in a variety of historic and cultural events. These events include activities such as the annual Historic Preservation Week celebration.
The students in San Juan Capistrano go to the Unified School District. However, currently High school students attend schools outside the city boundaries. In 2007 San Juan Hills High School was openend within the city, enrolling about 600 freshmen students. It is expected that nearly all high school students in the City will move to the San Juan Hills High School in the near future.
Attractions in the city
Ronald W. Caspers Wilderness Park This park is stretched on 8,000 acre wilderness, preserved among the deep valleys of the western coastal Santa Ana Mountains. The park has campgrounds, restrooms and showers, picnic areas, hiking and equestrian trails. A tourist guide is available to give an insight into the park's history, wildlife and plant life to the visitors.
Ghost Stories about Capistrano
In folklores, San Juan Capistrano is associated with famous ghost stories. There maybe no reality in these stories but they provide an element of mystery and suspense to the city. For few people, it is a source of continous entertainment.
Mission San Juan Capistrano
Mission San Juan Capistrano, the Birthplace of Orange County, was founded more than two hundred years ago. Today it is a monument to California' multi-cultural history, embracing its Native American, Spanish, Mexican and European heritage.
Visitors will discover many areas of interest within the Mission walls. Few can relate to the ringing of century old bells and for few, the lush green gardens and cool fountains may provide serenity. Few enjoy the seclusion, giving them an opportunity to escape from the hustle and bustle of the outside world.
Zoomars Petting Zoo
Hundreds of friendly animals have been caged at Zoomars Petting Zoo. There are animals of various kinds such as goats, emus, llamas, donkeys, alpacas, sheep, geese, ducks, guinea pigs and a bunny patch. Children enjoy petting the animals. Youngsters can also saddle up for a pony ride or take a ride on the miniature train.
The Protected Hilltops of San Jaun Capistrano
In addition to the historical Mission, San Juan Capistrano is surrounded by hills. The City of San Juan Capistrano has a strict building code by which no structure is allowed to be built 3/4 of the way up the hills. In this way the City has successfully protected it beautiful rolling hills which add to the natural beauty of the City.
The Legendary Mustard Seed Trail
The California Missions are located on the El Camino Real, Spanish of the Royal Road. They start in San Diego and go to Sonoma and are situated about 30 miles apart from each other. It was about one day journey on foot or horseback. The Legend of the Mustard Seed Trail tells a story of a very old custom of the Padres.
While walking on the narrow dusty footpath of the early El Camino Real the Padres carried a sack of Mustard seeds at their sides. They scattered the seeds along the path thus marking the way to the next Mission. Today on the pristine hills surrounding San Jaun Capistrano and near other California Missions all along the El Camino Real, you can see fields of wild mustard.
San Juan Capistrano"s train depot was completed on October 8, 1894 and considered by many as the finest depot on the Santa Fe system. It"s a lovely building with mission arches, a dome 40 feet high with a mission bell, dainty ticket office and quaint old fashion fireplace. However, the depot is now home to Sarducci"s Italian restaurant, but it is still worth a visit.
The City of San Juan Capistrano is popular for its legendary folklores, the famous Mission heritage and lastly for preserving its historic landmarks. A stay in San Juan Capistrano will indeed enrich you with a unique experience.