Preparing for a Family History Travel Trip

I am an avid traveler, as most of us are. So imagine my surprise to learn that while planning my trip to Ireland, I learned that I had family from there! Researching your ancestry and roots can not only help you take a glimpse into the people that came before you but also help you experience those travel destinations a little differently. Every “journey home”  starts at home, and in searching to learn more about my ancestors, it made me realize how important researching your ancestry is before traveling!


Preparing for a Family History Travel Trip


Several years ago, we traveled to Italy and enjoyed researching my husband's family side of the tree. We learned a lot about the Italian heritage and got to taste the flavors of the region through different dining experiences. If you have the chance to take a family history travel trip, I highly recommend it! It definitely helps you feel connected to a place you are traveling to in a different way.

How to Help You Find Your Family Tree

You’ve all likely seen the commercials for 23andme and other genealogy testing services, and while these can be a jumping-off point, this is just one way to start your family tree journey. Online services such as and at-home DNA tests can help you learn insights into your background and where you come from, which can be an amazing start.


Look into public genealogy records

There are several places around the world where you can sift through their massive genealogy collection and research your own ancestry. There is a Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana, or you can work with a genealogist expert for more information.

Start by researching your last name

You might be shocked at how far you can get by just searching your last name. Especially if your last name isn’t very common. Without a single guide or DNA test, you may be able to trace your last name back to a few countries and learn more about the land where your distant relatives may have lived.

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Talk to your elders

Do you have great grandparents or grandparents who are still alive? They may be able to give you some insight or even names that can help you with your search! You may be shocked to find how much detail you can find just by asking the elders in your family.

travel trip family ancestry

Google Each Destination

Once you know about where you are from and the names of distant family members who lived there, do some exploring on Google Maps. You can find the best routes and more information about the laws and how to travel. You can even find out what’s around there and places that your distant ancestors may have visited or family that could still live in the area.

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Share on Social Media

It might sound tacky to share on social media, but with how many users are on each platform, you never know if you’ll find your long-lost cousin twice removed or some other crazy relative by just sharing your journey exploring your journey home. Just sharing your trip and your findings might help you find more people related to you!

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Hopefully, this guide has inspired you to dig into your family’s history. You never know what family information you may find, and if you find some distant relatives you didn’t know were out there. My own journey has taught me that you never know who or where you might find family, and I’m excited to explore my relative’s homeland on my trip to Ireland.

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1 comment

April Foster said...

Can't wait to hear and see what you find (or don't find) for our Irish family. Have a great time. <3

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