Heritage Travel

We travel for lots of different reasons: to relax, to learn, to take on a challenge, to eat well; the list goes on, but there’s now another fast-growing reason to roam - Heritage Travel. If you were to drill down to the essence of why foreign travel is so important, it’s because seeing other places, and other ways of life, helps you broaden your horizons and gain an understanding of how others think and feel. With the emergence of family history studies and DNA tests we are ever more able to find out who we are and where we’re from. Visiting somewhere your heritage investigations say you hail from is the perfect way to put yourself into context in the wider world. Done properly (which of course it would be with us) this sort of tailor-made trip can be a profoundly moving experience.

DNA Travel
The development of quick, easy and cheap DNA test kits is - in our humble opinion - one of the great scientific breakthroughs of recent years. Spit in a test tube (or swab your cheek), post it off to the lab and within a few weeks you should have an accurate idea of your DNA lineage. It's pretty remarkable technology, and hopefully you'll discover some excitingly exotic genealogical connection to a part of the world you had no idea you were linked to. In order to provide our clients with the best DNA holiday experience, we've partnered with one of the finest DNA testing companies in the world, the UK's very own Living DNA. Founder Hannah Nicholson says 'we are excited about DNA Travel and our partnership with Original Travel. When people see their personal ancestry results, and how many places of the world they come from - it can spark a curiosity and interest that can lead to us seeing just how connected we all are. Bringing this information to life through a tailor-made trip to visit where your ancestors come from helps put your results into context and provides an incredible purpose to seeing and exploring the world. We are so excited to further support people to understand more about themselves.'

Genealogical Travel
While DNA testing is a great way to discover some unrealised connection to interesting and intriguing places around the world, DNA results tend to offer quite top-level information, such as telling you you're 17% Scandinavian (which, as a Brit, is a sure sign of Viking ancestors). If you get the ancestry bug big time - like millions around the world - you might want to drill a little deeper into your family tree to unearth more details from birth certificates, death records etc. You can then visit the actual places your ancestors lived. We work with a number of expert 'genies' (genealogists) who can help you put the pieces of your genealogical jigsaw together, which we can then use to tailor-make a journey of discovery. There's something particularly poignant about visiting the street where an ancestor grew up or tracing the graveyard where they might be buried.

Grandma Memory Travel
Less scientific than the above, but also often a gold mine of information (and a good excuse to go visit) is speaking to any ageing relatives to find out if there are any interesting international connections. Grandma's throw away remark about when great-grandfather Reginald lived in Madurai in India might turn into an epic voyage of discovery, and with our unparalleled network of contacts around the globe we can always help unveil information and help tailor a trip around your ancestral history.

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Tom is our 'Heritage Travel' expert and as a seasoned traveller has the inside track on the most memorable adventures.

Image of Tom Barber