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Concrete statue is 26 ft. tall.

Goofy Father Junipero Serra Statue

Field review by the editors.

Hillsborough, California

Junipero Serra (1713-1784), the Founder of California, is celebrated elsewhere (Pope Francis made him a saint in 2015), but this giant cartoonish version of the controversial priest is our favorite tribute.

The 26-foot-tall concrete version of the Spanish missionary is on one knee on a grassy hillside. He points west across Interstate 280 towards Crystal Springs Reservoir, at wooded hills surprisingly untouched by builders and tech company HQs.

The sculpture sits on a nine-sided base, each face naming an 18th century mission that he helped to establish. The giant priest was designed and funded by Louis DuBois, in conjunction with the California Department of Transportation and the San Mateo County Historical Association.

Father Serra points to the next frontier.

Visitors park in an interstate rest area, and walk up a path to the statue, where you can examine Junipero's giant toenails up close. A sign along the path warns to watch for rattlesnakes skulking in the brush.

Goofy Father Junipero Serra Statue

I-280, Hillsborough, CA
Northwest of San Mateo, along I-280, northbound side north of Crystal Springs Rd. Exit.
Aug. 2016: Statue reported fenced off. Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Flintstone HouseFlintstone House, Hillsborough, CA - < 1 mi.
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In the region:
Pacific Bus Museum, Fremont, CA - 21 mi.

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