St Benedict's Painted Church

Top choice in South Kona Coast

A pulpit with a view, gravestones cradled by tropical blooms and a little chapel with floor-to-ceiling 'outsider art' make this church a picturesque side trip. John Velghe, a Catholic priest and self-taught artist, came to Hawaiʻi from Belgium in 1899 and modeled the vaulted nave on a Gothic cathedral in Burgos, Spain. His trompe l'oeil artwork merges European structure with Polynesian scenery, such as Jesus casting out the devil in front of what looks like the Pololu Valley.

Although admission is free, we suggest leaving a little donation to help upkeep this fascinating, living piece of culture.

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