Genealogy Tours Testimonials

ItalianSide helps you to plan and fully enjoy your trip to your ancestor’s homeland.

In this page we collected some of the feedback we’ve received about our genealogy tours from our customers all around the world.

italian travel

If you want to read other stories from our customers take a look here

Gary USA (Ancestry Tour in Apulia, Bari Area – April 2024):
“The tour was amazing. We were able to find many places related to the family history, and even found a spot from an old family photograph! It’s hard to put into words how meaningful it was to be there. I could have stayed much longer and continued to learn about all of it!
Simply being in Noicattaro was special, and to be there with the knowledge of our families’ history in the area that you provided, see specific places, and get a glimpse of life in Noicattaro, both past and present, added another level of meaning. Thank you for all of your effort and communication to make this work, it all meant a lot to us.
I want to add that our tour guide Federica was such a significant part of it all and it would not have been the same without her.
Her insight that she shared with us provided so much more depth to the experience. She gave us history of the area, lead us through the places that were related to our family history, provided opportunities for us to experience daily life there, and helped us communicate and interact with local people. She clearly cared about our time there, and about Noicattaro. She was, kind, respectful, fun, and obviously knowledgeable. She wove the family history and other insights on Noicattaro together wonderfully and openly welcomed us to her home town. We anticipated the tour being a meaningful experience, but having Federica as our guide truly added so much to it.
We really cannot say enough good things about the entire experience and are very grateful for all that everyone did to make it work.
I am still looking through all of the family history information so I will reach out with any questions if that is ok.
Thank you again Domenico, it has all been wonderful.”

Stuart Clayton USA (Ancestry Tour in Frosinone Area – October 2023):
“A big thankyou to all at ItalianSide, their family researcher and their tour partners FerulaViaggi, for a special day tour of our ancestral villages CantaLupo, Colle San Magno and Roccasecca. The trip far exceeded the expectations of our tour party.
Our driver, guide and local people who turned out to welcome us like long lost family, made the day very special.
Our guide gained access to the home of our ancestors still occupied by a relative who made us feel very welcome. An emotional moment for us all to take coffee in the home of Italian great grandfather together with new found relatives.
The tour of the town including the Cemetery, Churches, Museum and local important buildings was accompanied by our guide and locals with expert local knowledge and a good amount of English to make the history come alive for us.
Our lunch break was a magnificent banquet of local food and the company of our guides made it a special family dining experience, the like we are unlikely to experience again.
A special day that left us all hoping to return one day.
Thanks again to all those that contributed to a day our family will treasure

Donald Estwanick USA (Ancestry Tour in Salerno area – september 2023):
“The genealogy tour provided by Gabrielle and his interpreter was outstanding. They did everything possible to show us my ancestors villages, attempted to obtain more information at the City Halls, and interviewed many local residents to uncover information about my Italian families. The tour was informative and enjoyable. I may never get back to Italy, but this visit will bring my joy in the future.”

Bob B. USA (Ancestry Tour in Reggio Calabria area – june 2023):
“The tour was fantastic!  Tommaso and our driver, Paulo were wonderful. Tommaso went above and beyond with a tour that lasted all day. I am hoping to return within a year and hopefully reunite with family members in the Reggio province. Thank you for all of your help.  The tour created lifetime lasting memories.  My wife and children loved it as well. Grazie mille, Bob.

Frank D’Andraia USA (Ancestry Tour in Basilicata and Puglia regions – september 2022):
“Recently I booked an ancestry tour with the ItalianSide for three. Our goal was to visit the hometown of a paternal grandparent in the Province of Potenza in the Italian region of Basilicata. The ItalianSide was skilled in organizing a customized visit to a small out of the way hilltop town, while offering truly unique and meaningful experiences. Our ancestry itinerary included meeting with local archivists and accessing historical documents. The ItalianSide provided an English speaking guide to tour the town and to translate when needed, as well as address special arrangements, such as a visit to the ancestral homestead. Arrangements were made for us to experience a home cooked meal that featured the specialities of the Basilicata region, as well as an opportunity to meet and interact with townspeople.
The ItalianSide worked with a local agency to address another request, to explore the region and visit notable sights without the hassle of worrying about arranging for transport, competent drivers, accommodations, knowledgeable English speaking guides, and making special bookings. The firm’s experience and knowledge of the area ensured there was something for everyone in the group and that our time in southern Italy was maximized. Like the ancestry portion of our trip, the arrangements made to visit Basilicata and Puglia enabled us to focus on the history, culture, and cuisine of the region without the aggravations associated with overseas travel.
The ItalianSide and Ferula Viaggi can be trusted to offer timeless professional services and a worry free adventure. The arrangements were, to use the Italian, “perfetto”!

Kristin Preisig, USA  (Ancestry Tour in Salerno province, Campania – december 2022):
“The historian researcher who worked with us, Gabriele, was wonderful! He found so much fascinating information and we had the priviledge of meeting him and translator Elena in Italy. Gabriele’s English is very good, but it was nice to also have a translator there for questions and my husband and I greatly enjoyed the company of them both. We met at the city hall in Vico Centro and Gabriele helped us obtain a copy of my great grandma’s birth record which stated her address. We were then able to go and visit the block she grew up on and the church she was baptized in! It was a wonderful experience that I’d dreamed of all my life. We also went to Praiano where my mom’s paternal side is from and walked around the steep hills and passed the church where my great grandfather was baptized. It was a thrill to see my last name and grandma’s maiden name on many of the mailboxes in front of the homes in both places! Unforgettable experience. They have now mailed me copies of the birth certificates that I requested for myself and several cousins as we are trying to see if we can get dual citizenship. This company has been responsive and professional throughout and I will be reaching out to them again for future inquiries into my Sicialian side. Highly recommend!

Kristin Preisig, USA  (Ancestry Tour in Benevento province, Campania – november 2022):

Just wanted to thank you so much for ItalianSide’s much appreciated help with finding my Italian roots! I thank you, Domenico, for prompt and benevolent assistance through several months – and of course Gabriele who ha searched through lots of handwritten documents to find out as much as possible about my ancestors. I am especially grateful for the pedigree charts which make it easier for us to get an overview.

The visit to Torrecuso was interesting – and touching. As expected, my gransparents’ families were poor people, working as farm workers on other people’s land. It must have been a hard life so I understand the desire to seek a better life in the Promised Land. Even so, it must have been a difficult decision leaving everything and everyone you know … I find it very brave. My grandparents did quite well in the US – with no education or language skills. And their eight children (only the first one born in Italy) did very well.

On the day of our visit to Torrecuso the rain was pouring down (the only day of our four weeks holiday!) but Gabriele and his interpreter still managed to show us around and give us an impression of what the town must have looked like. Many of the old houses were of course destroyed in the 1980 earthquake but there are still houses that give us an idea of how people lived …

Experiencing this visit and all the research around it has made a profound impression – and has given me and my family memories for life.

Ron & Janet Stolle., USA  (Ancestry Tour in Calabria – august 2022):

Just returned from our overseas travels and wanted to write to thank you for Carmela’s research into the Rosa family of Acri. Still working on the translation to English of the numerous copies of documents that were furnished. Also, a big thanks for arranging the tour of Acri, on 10 August, with Antonella and her husband. They went well above and beyond our expectations and helped bring the Rosa family ancestral connections to life. We truly appreciated Antonella efforts, their pre-visit preparations, and their enthusiasm. They were very informative and accommodating.  We’re in the process of sharing our Rosa family findings with the rest of the family.
Again, many thanks.

Jan M., USA  (Ancestry Tour in Basilicata – september 2021):

ItalianSide’s services were incredible. Because of their hard work, we enjoyed the trip of a lifetime.
First, Michele was able to do ancestral research that resulted in my family finding out about a great-grandmother who died in the 1800s, leaving no trace as to where she was born or even who her parents were. Lack of information plagued her surviving infant daughter her entire life.
While genetic testing, the use of multiple ancestral websites, and the help of professional researchers in the United States all failed to identify even where this lost relative was born, Michele was able to successfully find her birth certificate and additional information about the lost relative, her parents, and her siblings. Most amazing of all, Michele discovered the lost relative was actually born in France to Italian parents. A visit to the small Basilicata village the family was from resulted in additional information being uncovered, including a plaque honoring a relative who died fighting for his country.
Wait, wait, that isn’t all. Michele also found the birth certificate from our grandfather on the other side of the family. When we visited the Basilicata village where this relative was from, tour guide Dora arranged for us to meet with a local villager who helped us to locate relatives still living in the town. They showed us the home where my grandfather was born but warned us that the home was due to be demolished the very next day because of earthquake damage (what timing!) The town’s local policeman volunteered to show us around. We all talked about it over a beer and shared family photos, with our tour guide serving as the interpreter.
Finally, we visited yet a third Basilicata village where relatives are from. Our tour guide knew some of the local people there too, and with their help, we had a coffee with a group of local women who had gone to school with one of our deceased relatives!
Did this experience exceed our expectations? Resoundingly YES, this all exceeded our wildest expectations.
Additionally, through Michele, we met Dora with Ferula Viaggi tours. Dora is to tour companies what Michele is to ancestral research. Every hotel she booked us in was wonderful, especially La Foresteria di San Leo in Trivigno. The local tour guides she introduced us to are amazing. They are all informative, pleasant, intelligent locals who know Basilicata and were able to adjust the tour to our needs and requests. The transport vehicles were clean and safe drivers transported us through the windy mountain roads.
If I have one regret, it is that we didn’t spend more time in Basilicata. A week was not enough.

Debbie & Tom Teofilo (USA)- traveling back to Grassano – Basilicata

Ciao Michele and Dora!
I am sorry to take so long to tell you that our tour of Grassano on October 21 was FANTASTIC!! 
Thank you so much, Michele, for making the initial arrangements and getting our family history information before the trip so we knew what records to search from the city and priest. ItalianSide found the street where our relative was born, so we could actually walk where our ancestors walked!

And Dora, thanks for finding our English-speaking tour guide. His tour was all-inclusive so we could learn about the town and its culture. We are proud to have family history in Grassano, and we look forward to returning someday.
We created our Christmas card with photos of our visit to Grassano
We are grateful to you both, and wish you a very happy year 2020! 

Angela- traveling back to the roots to Basilicata – october 2019
Words cannot adequately convey what a wonderful time my Husband and I had in beautiful Basilicata! The location, the people and the experiences created memories that will never be forgotten! And, please know that much of the success of our trip was due to our extraordinary tour host, Luciano. We thank you so very much for introducing us to him. His incredible knowledge of the area and its history and warm connection to the people made our time very special. Luciano understood how deeply moving it was to walk in the footsteps of my Family and did everything he could to make the experience meaningful. He helped us find the streets they lived on, the church where my Grandparents were married and my Father baptized. He was even able to help me see and make copies of original birth, baptismal and marriage certificates! He spent the entire day assuring our experience was wonderful. Many, many thanks Dora, for the work you did to find such a wonderful tour host. Many thanks to you too Michele! I greatly appreciated your help with planning the trip, answering my multiple questions and connecting us with Dora. It was a wonderful journey. We fell in love with Basilicata and the people and it is our sincere hope to return again!

Roger- traveling back to the roots to Sicily – July 2019
I want to thank you for all that you produced for us.
The highlight of our italian trip was meeting Salvatore in Carlentini, receiving his research – and his guided tour of Carlentini and of the places where some of our ancestors lived (and died) and worshiped.
I should say that we took a “leap of faith” in asking you to work with us, after finding you on the internet.
But we are glad that we took the risk and the result was very worthwhile.

Margaret- California October 2018
Thanks to the excellent research done by Michele and Gabriele, I was able to locate the home where my grandfather was born in Cervino, Italy in 1885.
We were taking a Mediterranean cruise that stopped in Naples so I took the opportunity to drive to the town. Gabriele was able to contact a relative who still lives in the town to let him know we were coming and upon arrival we were treated like royalty. It was an emotional and memorable day. was professional, responsive and stayed in touch with me during the process to keep me updated on their progress.
I would highly recommend their services. There is no way I could have accomplished what they were able to do.
The family tree and information going back 4 generations will be something I can share with the entire family.
Mille grazie!

Margareth Blaurock July 2018
“I have been quite busy since I returned from our trip, but I wanted to let you know that all of the ladies enjoyed themselves. Everything that was planned for us was great. We enjoyed the guides, and the accommodations. I would love to come back and make it a longer trip.”

Gary Port Richmond, VA June 2018
“1.Check! Italian side provided Carrano family baptism, birth, marriage digital documents with translations and pedigree chart.

2.Check! Italian side provided orphaned grandfather ‘s military and baptism digital documents with translations. Including when and where he was found and how he was named.

3.Check! Gabriele with translator and our family of 5 attended a Mass at grandmother Carrano’s Baptismal church in Amalfi. We talked with church neighbors which was translated later.

Marian – USA
“The visit to Palo del Colle and Bari was a special one for us and we thank you all for the part each of you had in making this a reality. Thanks again for taking us around, sharing your knowledge, giving us tips, and for your winning attitude. What a feeling! Grazie mille! Marian Jennifer Maya”

kathryn – USA
“I can not thank Italian Side enough for finding information about my grandfathers family in Massa Lubrense. Because of the information I receive before my trip to Italy I was able find the home my grandfather was born In, and the same home that his father passed away in. We’re were also able to visit his family church. What an amazing feeling to walk where my grandfather had walked!
Grazie Mille for giving me the gift of tracing my families roots!”

Shirley – USA
“It was an amazing trip…as I look back we did so many things in such a short time. It was a successful genealogy trip with finding more than I anticipated….how incredible that we walked in their town, saw records of their life and visited the church where our grandparents married…..all leading to where each of us came from. I don’t think we could have asked for much more.”

Christine – USA
Our genealogy tour was wonderful, wonderful!! We had a great time and now precious memories. What did we like best? Cannot really say? Finding more records of our ancestors, visiting the church where our grandparents were married, walking the roads where they had walked, all very exciting.
My opinion – this is a very creative type of tour – the cooking lessons, the winery, the cheese and salami lunch – great experiences. The beautiful scenery and churches all very nice.

Cathy – USA
“Ciao!! We got back early Monday morning.
We had a fantastic trip. Thanks to ItalianSide for making it so wonderful.
Andrea was wonderful. He was a delight to spend time with. He was a very careful driver. A wonderful translator. He was very very helpful. I have made new family in the region of Italy that my great grandparents came from. This all due to the connection you made for me. Thank you thank you thank you again.
I will continue to suggest anyone who wishes to tour Italy to get in touch with you guys take care and God bless”

Gina – USA
“My family and I had excellent tours in Matera and Irsina. Dora and Eleonora were awesome! I learned so much about my family roots in the short time we had in Irsina. Seeing where my grandparents and great-grandparents were married was a thrill! Seeing the street where my grandmother was born left me speechless. The tour of Matera was amazing! Dora took us to places that I don’t believe we would have found on our own.
Thank you so much for putting me in touch with such wonderful and nice ladies. It was a joyful day!”

Bernadette – Australia
“Thank you for helping me to arrange my trip. It was wonderful.
You took out all the worry about travelling on my own so I could really enjoy myself and soak up the atmosphere.
Everyone really looked after me and was very helpful in the towns I visited.
The itinerary, the local guides, the driver were all wonderful.
I was able to do some great research in my grandfathers hometown and speak with people in the town, the commune and the library. I saw where my grandfather grew up over 100 years ago and where his family lived. I even saw his ancestors referenced in the local library. Family research is a long process, but it makes it all the more exciting when you have Italian roots in such a beautiful country. Someone once said that “A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles”.
Through ItalianSide and the many wonderful people I met in Italy I’m absolutely convinced of this.
It’s important to know where you have come from in order to know where you are going.
Thanks to ItalianSide for helping to make this happen.”

Click here for more testimonials about our genealogy researches in Italy

Scroll to Top