Celebrities and public figures appearing on NBC’s Who do You Think You Are and PBS’ Finding Your Roots have proven time travel is real … at least when it comes to tracing the new ways individuals can use modern technology to track down their familial and genetic roots, encountering all kinds of surprises along the way. However, time travel is not restricted to the rich and famous. With websites and organizations like Ancestry.com and 23 and Me, it’s never been easier to dig back into time to uncover hidden gems of family history, and seeing where your forefathers fit into their origins’ vast historic canvas.
Cunard recently announced it joined forces with Ancestry.com and some noted genealogists to take individuals and families on a literal trip of a lifetime that extends into the lifetimes of those who came before them. “A Journey of Genealogy,” setting sail aboard the Queen Mary 2 Nov. 4–11, 2018, will lead guests on a trans-Atlantic journey to learn about family history, sift through records and discover their ethnic origins with AncestryDNA.
It is interesting to note one out of five immigrants who came to the United States through Ellis Island traveled on Cunard, and anthropologist Mary-Ann Ochota and historian Suzannah Lipscomb will be on hand to help guests discover how archaeology, anthropology and history factor into their roots.
Closer to home, Australian tour company Unlock the Past partnered with U.S. travel agency Cruise Planner/O’Connell Travel to include curious Americans on the 2018 edition of its popular Alaska genealogy cruise aboard Royal Caribbean‘s Explorer of the Seas. The week-long (Sept. 7–14) sojourn departs from Seattle, and covers Juneau, Skagway, Tracy Arm Fjord, Alaska, and Victoria, British Columbia.
The conference program onboard between destinations encompasses 40–45 talks by such noted ancestry experts as Scotland’s Chris Paton, author of nine Unlock the Past books, Dick Eastman of Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter, Dr. Janet Few and Caroline Gurney from England, Jan Gow from New Zealand, Shauna Hicks, Eric and Rosemary Kopittke, Mike Murray and Helen Smith from Australia, and Cyndi Ingle from the United States.
AmaWaterways, Tauck Worldwide and Uniworld all offer Jewish Heritage Connections cruises through Europe that not only include a visit to the essential sites like the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, but also monuments, museums and other discoveries in towns and cities along the Rhine and other major rivers. Uniworld’s newest themed river cruise showcases the Jewish history and culture of historic Germany along with the rebirth of Jewish communities in the 21st century. Tauck’s Jewish cruise concentrates on the ashkenaz Jewish communities of Warsaw, Budapest, Vienna and Prague, on their two-week journeys in 2018. Armenian Heritage Cruises, meanwhile, coordinated with Royal Caribbean for a Jan. 20–28, 2018, cruise through the Caribbean.
Only the bravest of family travelers should venture to Universal Orlando Halloween Horror Nights. Every year, Universal Orlando turns into the spookiest place in Florida, if not in the country. On select nights throughout the season, visitors and locals alike can head to the popular amusement park for frights, scares and thrilling adventures. Explore 10 terrifying haunted houses; five scare zones; live entertainment; and themed attractions, food and merchandise.
As the only major U.S. airline to own a flight school, United Airlines already hit a major milestone, and now the carrier celebrates another important — and historic — step as the inaugural class of United Aviate Academy pilots graduates, leading the next generation of aviators. The 51 students in the graduating class were majority, at 80 percent, women and people of color — another stride toward United’s goal of training 5,000 new pilots by 2030 with half women or POC.
With kids back in school and the grueling temperatures of summer finally behind us, life is starting to get back into the routine of fall. That doesn’t mean, however, that family fun has to stop. Big international trips may not be practical for all family travelers this time of year, but places like South County in Rhode Island offer so many fun things to do for families, a quick trip to this East Coast haven is practically a must.
Take Part in England’s Exmoor Dark Skies Festival Dusk Wildlife Safaris and Children’s Art Competition
Planning a trip to the United Kingdom soon? Time your travel for the Exmoor Dark Skies Festival in Somerset, England, from Oct. 13 to 29. The setting is Exmoor National Park, located within a gorgeous mix of farmland, wild forests, stunning valleys and moorlands in South West England.
United Airlines is in the midst of a major initiative to modernize its fleet over the next several years. After first announcing the plan in 2021, planes fitted with United’s signature interior are finally beginning to appear across the airline’s narrowbody fleet of Boeing and Airbus planes. United flyers are sure to notice these enhancements from the moment they step on board: Each new or updated plane sports remodeled seats, seatback entertainment screens for everyone, Bluetooth connectivity and more, all adding up to a better experience on every journey.
Part of a family who just loves a good scare or ghost story? This fall, wherever your travels might take you, chances are you’ll be near an Omni hotel or resort with a history of haunted sightings and other scary happenings. So, why not learn a bit about where you’re staying to make the experience all the more eerie …