Genealogical Travel: Explore Your Roots
Travel Back to Your Roots
Have you ever wondered if your ancestors ruled ancient civilisations? Do you know if you have exotic origins? Would you like to see where your family lived, worked and thrived in years gone by?
Genealogical travel – also known as heritage tourism – combines a passion for history with a widely-shared thirst for travel. The internet has made it easier than ever to research your family tree, but genealogy tours are a way to immerse yourself in your history, experience the culture of your ancestry and connect with your roots.
Genealogy tourism is about digging deep into your history. It involves visits to archives, churches and cemeteries, tracing properties and perhaps even finding distant relatives. This type of holiday is popular among grandparents looking to introduce their history to their children and grandchildren but anyone could go on a journey to discover their family history! From travelling back to the country left unvisited since a childhood adoption, to looking for answers to questions about the past – there are heaps of reasons for taking a genealogical trip.
Common Genealogical Travel Destinations
Common places to visit on genealogical travel expeditions include Ireland, Scotland, Italy and Germany. Countries such as Czech Republic, Serbia, Slovakia, Belarus and Ukraine are also popular among travellers with Eastern European ancestry.
Where to Start
You may have an idea about your family history already, but it’s a good idea to do some thorough research before your trip. Some genealogy specialists suggest having your DNA tested to tell you more detail about where you’re from and who you’re related to – professional DNA test providers have access to databases which can provide you with the level of detail you may need.
With a little knowledge about your ancestry as a starting point, you could find plenty of information by researching online. Ancestry Search [Link: http://ancestrysearch.co/us/2a/] is a reliable source which allows you to search based on a name, date of birth and birthplace. There are also plenty of other online resources to assist you with your research or, of course, you may also have family members who’ll be able to guide you. Alternatively, hiring a genealogist could help you explore your history and plan a bespoke genealogical tour.
Ultimately, the more information you have the better because it allows you to design a more personalised experience.
Planning Your Genealogical Tour
Having an idea of the destination for your trip is the best place to begin. Your research should provide you with some knowledge about where your ancestors grew up and lived, however you may have discovered multiple locations, so you’ll need to pick one to start with.
You should decide what it is you want to get out of your trip – do you just want to visit the place of your ancestry and get a feel for it? Perhaps you’d like to visit an old family house, or view birth, death or marriage certificates? When you’ve decided this, you’ll be able put a clear itinerary together.
With a plan in mind, you could rely on the knowledge, passion and experience of a specialist ancestry tour company who will be able to help organise your trip and guide you when you are there. There are plenty of genealogy tour companies indexed online. Some are more specific to certain countries, religions or themes, whereas others will help you whatever your requirements. For those restricted to a budget, contacting a local guide who knows the history of your destination and can explain it to you in detail is a good way to learn about where your family originates from.
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