World Famous Painted Churches
The Painted Churches are located in the communities of Dubina, High Hill, Praha, and Ammannsville. They appear unassuming as you approach them, but as you enter the front doors prepare to have your breath taken away by the incredible beauty found inside.
To book a Tour of the Painted Churches or for more information, please call (979) 743-4514. The churches are all active and do conduct services on Saturdays and Sundays. You may tour the churches Monday-Saturday 9:00-4:00pm, but please be respectful of any events or services that you may encounter. In addition, the church at Praha requests that all visitors be out of the church by 3:00 on Saturdays.
Tour of the Painted Churches
General Information: Guided tours of the Schulenburg area are offered year-round, Monday through Saturday, except for certain holidays and Catholic holy days. The Painted Churches on the tour are active churches, therefore, tours are not available on Sundays. The tour typically covers 4 churches in the area surrounding Schulenburg, however, by special request we can add 2 more churches to the tour. We can also arrange tours of the museums in the area which include the Schulenburg Historical Museum, the Texas Polka Music Museum, the Stanzel Model Aircraft Museum, and the E.A. Arnim Museum & Archives. Additionally, there are 3 wineries nearby. The Chamber can customize a tour for your group with any combination of churches, museums, and wineries. There is no minimum or maximum number of visitors per tour. The Chamber strives to accommodate groups of all sizes, whether 1 or 100.
Reservations/Tour Fees: Select your desired date well in advance and call us to book a tour. A deposit of $50.00 is required and must be received 2 weeks prior to the scheduled date of your tour. When you arrive for the tour, you may choose to have the deposit refunded or applied to the tour fees. Beginning September 1, 2020 the cost of the tour itself will be$12.00 per person for 4 churches; $18.00 per person for 6 churches.For groups of 30 or more, the cost will remain $10.00 per person. We do not recommend touring 6 churches for large groups because of the time involved Separate costs would be incurred at the wineries for tastings and other wine purchases. A generous portion of the tour fees are given to the churches and museums to assist in their restoration and upkeep.
Tour Guides: A local tour guide will be assigned to your group and will meet you at the Chamber of Commerce office at your scheduled time. He or she will then “step on” your vehicle and accompany you throughout the tour. The tour guides are well-trained volunteers who are not compensated by the Chamber. The customary, suggested gratuity for the guide is a minimum of $50.00 for groups of 14 or fewer people. For groups of 15 or more, and for photography groups, the minimum suggested gratuity is $60.00 because of the extra time involved. We ask that the minimum gratuity be paid up front before leaving on your tour. You are welcome to give more at the end of the tour, if you wish. *During the pandemic, guides will drive their own vehicles and you will follow them. The gratuity will be $50.00 for small groups and $60.00 for large groups. This is a temporary change until the pandemic is over.
Tour Times: Tours are scheduled according to the beginning time that works best for your group, however, we recommend starting between 9:15am and 11:00am to ensure that you have plenty of time to enjoy the churches before they close for the day.
Lunch: Tours generally make a stop for lunch. The Chamber staff can assist you with selecting a restaurant and with making reservations. A list of local restaurants is available on the Chamber website under “Dining.”
Cancellations: If you need to cancel, you are permitted to reschedule and transfer your deposit to another day (up to one year from the original scheduled date). The cancellation must be made within 24 hours of your scheduled time and day or the deposit will be forfeited. Deposits can also be refunded at your request when canceling.
Thank You for Touring the Painted Churches
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do I arrange a tour of the Painted Churches?
When you have a date in mind for a tour, call the Chamber office at least 2 weeks in advance to see if the date is available. The staff will help you with all the details. Please do not send a reservation form and deposit without talking with the Chamber staff first.
2. Why do I have to pay a $50.00 deposit?
The deposit guarantees your reservation with the Chamber and it assures that you will show up for your tour. A guide is not assigned to your group until the deposit is paid. The deposit will be applied to the tour fees when you arrive. If for some reason you do not show up for your tour and do not call to cancel it at least the day before, the deposit will be forfeited.
3. Why do I have to give the guide a gratuity?
The Chamber is very fortunate to have excellent docents who volunteer their time to provide tours to our visitors. It is expected that they be compensated by your group for their time and expertise. We suggest a gratuity of at least $50.00 for groups of up to 15 people. For groups larger than 15, we suggest a gratuity of at least $60.00.
4. Is there a bus that we all ride on or do I have to drive my own car?
Transportation is provided by our visitors, and the tour guide will ride in your vehicle with you if there is room. The guide can drive their vehicle, if needed, but cannot transport tour members.
5. Is there a minimum number of people for a guided tour?
The Chamber is happy to accommodate groups of any size, whether it is 1 or 100.
6. If I just have a few people, can you combine my group with another one?
The Chamber strives to accommodate as many groups as possible, but we don’t always have enough docents available on a given day. We also try to limit the guided tours to no more than six per day. We will only combine two groups when it is an emergency. We want each group to feel that it is their special event, not something they have to share with strangers. If we can’t provide a guided tour for you on the date you request, please consider another date or take the self-guided tour.
7. May I visit the churches on my own without a guide?
If you have a small group of no more than 6 people, you may visit the churches on your own. The churches are normally available from 9:00 am until 4:00 pm, Mondays thru Saturdays, with some exceptions. St. Mary’s Church at Praha asks that visitors be out of the church by 3:00 on Saturdays so that preparations for evening Mass can be made. The church at Dubina does not allow visitors inside the church without a guide. You may, however, enter the front lobby and look through locked gates. Occasionally, there are weddings, funerals, or special Masses at some of the churches, therefore, it’s a good idea to call the Chamber ahead of your visit to be sure the churches are available.
8. Why can’t I visit the churches on Sundays and Holy Days?
All of the Painted Churches are active parishes, with services on weekends and special days.
9.Do the churches get any of the money that the Chamber makes from tours?
The Chamber gives a generous portion of the money from tours to the churches. The same applies to the museums and other churches that are part of the Museum Tour and the County Line Tour.
10. Are there any special rules we need to follow while visiting the churches?
There are several rules of church etiquette that must be followed:
Please remember to close all doors behind you; you are welcome inside but we prefer the birds and wildlife stay outdoors.
No food, drinks, chewing gum, tobacco, or pets are allowed.
You may sit down in the pews, but please do not go into the choir loft or in the altar area.
You may not touch the statues, sculptures, or paintings.
Please do not take the prayer books as these are used at each Mass by the congregations.
These churches are still active today and do have services, prayer times, weddings, and funerals.Please respect the congregations by remaining outside if an event is in progress, and be mindful of those who may be coming in to worship.
The Schulenburg Chamber of Commerce is not responsible for accidents or injuries. Be especially mindful of the pews in the church at Dubina because of slight protrusions at the bottom of each pew.
All churches are handicap accessible.