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Top Tips for Ancestral Tourism

November has been wet and dull in Glasgow this year, and when it's dark and miserable outside, it's only natural that our thoughts turn to next year's summer holidays. Ancestral tourism is an important growing market for Scotland, bringing thousands of people here each year to explore their roots. If you're one of the estimated 500 million people with Scottish roots, what do you need to know about exploring your roots?


  1. Do your research!! Scotland is a big place, and there's a lot to see. Even if you're not naturally a planner, it is well worth looking into the places your ancestors would have lived, worked or spent their leisure time. And if you haven't the time and inclination to do that research yourself - get in touch with me and I can do that for you.

  2. Get on foot. If you are pressed for time, then seeing everything from the window of your car might be the only option. But if you have the time, plan a walking tour around the streets or town where your ancestors would have walked.

  3. Think about where to stay - wouldn't it be cool to be able to stay in the village or street where your ancestor lived? Many pubs have rooms, Airbnb properties exist in most locations, or book into a bed and breakfast.

  4. Think flexible - many cities and towns in Scotland underwent huge redevelopment in the last century. If addresses no longer exist that doesn't mean there is nothing to see, you might still be able to see houses, churches, public buildings and local landmarks.

  5. Get in touch in advance - if you are visiting Scotland and really want to see a specific church, school or other building, try to set this up in advance. Many buildings are happy to welcome visitors but may require notice to have the right staff on site.


Ancestral tourism is a huge market and a great way to have a holiday with a difference. If you're planning on discovering your roots in Scotland, get in touch!


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