Beaumont's overnight oil boom in 1901 brought fortune seekers of all religious denominations to town; and, just as fast as the oil derricks went up so did dozens of churches and places of worship. Our Faith Trail recognizes the cultural, architectural and historic significance of these sites.
Become inspired by the beauty and grandeur of the St. Anthony Cathedral Basilica, the cornerstone of Beaumont's Faith Trail. Nicknamed the "Little Vatican," St. Anthony's soaring dome depicts the glory of heaven. The beautiful array of German and French stained glass windows grace the church along with priceless mosaics, icons, paintings, reliquaries, the beautiful baldachino and the marble altar.
Next, visit the Tyrrell Historical Library. Constructed in 1903 as the First Baptist Church of Beaumont, the rough-quarried limestone exterior instantly reminds the first-time viewer of a medieval castle (with stained-glass windows). The Library now houses Beaumont and all of Southeast Texas' historical and genealogical archives. Walk along the bricked sidewalks to the Art Museum of Southeast Texas where you can enjoy lunch at the Two Magnolias Café, serving hot specials like chicken spaghetti and homemade desserts. Special menus and group pricing is available.
The tour continues to the Temple Emanuel, established in 1895 as the oldest Jewish place of worship in Beaumont. The Temple displays historic and religious treasures in its octagonal sanctuary, including massive leaded glass windows designed by artist Ze'ev Raban. Take a short drive over to Spindletop-Gladys City Boomtown Museum, where you'll witness Beaumont's rich oil heritage and learn how this overnight oil boom brought travelers from all faiths to Beaumont. While there, take a moment to watch the world's only working replica gusher blow water hundreds of feet into Beaumont's blue sky. Your group will love dinner at Spindletop Steakhouse & Continental Cuisine on historic Crockett Street. Enjoy new twists on old favorites like chicken pot pie and onion rings.
Head just minutes South of Beaumont to the Buu Mon Buddhist Temple in Port Arthur. Boasting a garden on the temple grounds, the Temple is internationally known for its many varieties of lotus, water lilies, and bamboo. While in Port Arthur visit Our Lady of Guadalupe Church and Shrine. Established in 1927 this site pays tribute to the Mexican American culture in Southeast Texas through statues and sculptures. No tour would be complete without souvenirs. Nederland's Boston Ave Shopping District is one stop your group can't miss! Park once and guests can walk to numerous shops selling candles, gifts, toys, home décor, and even pick up lunch at area cafés.
An absolute must-see for the Golden Triangle visitor is Orange's First Presbyterian Church. One of the most distinctive buildings in the Southwest, the Greek-Revival-style building is built of Texas pink granite and was dedicated January 28, 1912. The church was the first air-conditioned building West of the Mississippi River and features the only opalescent glass dome in the country.
While in Orange, see God's hand at work at Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center. Shangri La is the newest addition to Green travel and offers a serene oasis for retreat and renewal. Attractions include a state-of-the art bird blind, world class botanical gardens, nature discovery center and even a swamp boat ride. Back in downtown Beaumont, satisfy even the most refined palettes at Suga's Deep South Cuisine for dinner, and enjoy comforting soul food and jazz music.