The Junípero Serra Museum

Operated by the San Diego History Center, the Junípero Serra Museum is an iconic regional landmark.Located just above Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, the Serra sits on one of the most significant historical sites on the West Coast, the site of the first permanent European settlement in what is today the State of California.


The Conrad Prebys Foundation, the local philanthropic organization well known for providing vital funds in support of the visual and performing arts, higher education, youth development, healthcare, and medical research, has granted $330,000 to the San Diego History Center for the restoration of the North Tower and East Façade of the Junípero Serra Museum in Presidio Park.

The maintenance and refurbishments on the 93 year building are scheduled regularly and this comprehensive restoration work on the North Tower and East Façade will match the West Façade work completed in 2019 and debuted at the celebration of the 250 anniversary of contemporary San Diego.  Restoration work is expected to be completed in the Spring and the Museum will reopen to the public to experience its popular interactive exhibitions.


Your donation is your admission to our museums. We don’t charge a fixed admission fee but look to your generosity to help make history accessible to all in our community, removing barriers for those who otherwise not be able to experience our region’s history. Suggested minimum donation: $10.

For more information: [email protected] or 619-232-6203


The Junípero Serra Museum in Presidio Park
2727 Presidio Drive, San Diego, CA 92103

Please note that Presidio Park and the Serra Museum, as a National Register District and historic building designed in 1928, do not meet current standards of accessibility. There are multiple elevations, including uneven surfaces and paths, some sloped or with stairs, and few with handrails.


Saturdays, and Sundays from 10am – 4pm or by appointment for groups.
From May 24 through August 30, also open Fridays 10 am – 4 pm.

The Museum is closed for special events on the following dates:

Saturday July 20, 2024 – close at 2 pm
Saturday July 27, 2024 – close at 2 pm
Friday August 2, 2024 – close at 2 pm
Saturday August 3, 2024 – close at 2 pm
Saturday August 17, 2024 – close at 2 pm



The Junípero Serra Museum, the historic home of the San Diego History Center, has begun a much-anticipated renovation.

This new core exhibition explores the earliest history of San Diego—the stories of the people that lived along the river’s edge since time immemorial—as well as those that came to settle the area and changed and used the river in order to adapt to San Diego’s arid climate. 

The new exhibit also focuses on the Presidio as the site of San Diego’s and California’s original European settlement, one that was an active military garrison from 1769 to 1835. The Presidio and its church complex housed soldiers, their families, craftsmen, Indian workers, prisoners, and others who settled in San Diego prior to the establishment of the Pueblo San Diego (now Old Town) at the foot of Presidio Hill. Historical accounts combined with archaeological data tell of the presence of diverse people from many different social and ethnic backgrounds, surviving in an often harsh environment. Visitors will also be able to step back in time to view the Presidio and the Kumeyaay settlement of Kosaii.

This renovation, eight years in the making, preserves and restores the original architectural splendor of the interior spaces of the museum, and provides visitors with breathtaking views from the Serra’s iconic tower. 

This exhibition would not be possible with the support of our presenting partners – the San Diego River Conservancy and State Coastal Conservancy. The San Diego History Center is also indebted to our group of grant matching donors as well the Kumeyaay Diegueño Land Conservancy, and a group of dedicated advisors and subject matter experts who are, with this writing, working to complete this new exhibition.

This exhibition is made possible by support from the San Diego River Conservancy and State Coastal Conservancy with funding provided by Proposition 84, The Safe Drinking Water, Water Quality and Supply, Flood Control, River and Coastal Protection Bond Act of 2006.

Wade Crowfoot, Secretary for Natural Resources

With additional contributions to the San Diego History Center by:

Mae M. and Edward C. Hall Family Fund

Iris H. W. Engstrand, Ph.D

Ray & Sue Carpenter

Charles Marston

Jane & Thompson Fetter

Robert & Tommi Adelizzi

Ann & Dr. John Hill

Ann Navarra

Laura & Jose Castillo

Connie C. Golden

Robert & Luanne Kittle

Sharon & Parley LeeMaster

Mitchell Lynn

Peggy Matthews

Frank & Madeleine Pavel

Sandy Randel

Matthew Schiff & Kerri Abrams

Nell Waltz

Helga & John Warner

Ann Zahner

Craig & Christine Andrews

Christine Baltuth

Joseph & Janet Bartel

Elaine Bradbury

Richard & Rosalie Bregante

Steve Cain

Jeff & Cindy Cavignac

Linda Cipriani

August Felando

Cindy & Thomas Goodman

Steve & Cathy Gustafson

Karen & Robert Hansen

Cynthia & Roger Hedgecock

Marie & Michael Huff

David Huffman & Elise Streicher

Thomas & Lucy Jackson

Charles King

Helen & Webster Kinnaird

Alyce & Mitch Lynn

Tom McGibney & Ginny Ollis

Jim & Ellen Moxham

William Newbern & Nora Hom

John & Mercedes Pederson

Sandra Perlatti

Shane Rose

Ellen Sweet

Deborah Szekely

Bob Vinton

Mary L. Walshok

Thomas & Nell Waltz

Margie & John Warner

Bob Watkins

John Weightmon & Nadine Corrigan

Laura Wile