We just completed a trip to Poland for the first time and we were searching for our "roots" outside of Poznan. I wanted to share that Poznan was a wonderful city to visit and that Tomasz from POZNAN TOURS (poznantours.com) was an absolutely incredible guide! Whether you're doing family history or simply want a wonderful guide to help you discover parts of Poland (or other countries as well!), he is the one to contact. He did so much research before we even arrived and everything was organized so we saw and experienced the most possible in our 1 day excursion. Tomasz seems ready and willing to facilitate whatever kind of adventure you're looking for, he's friendly, energetic, knowledgeable and his English is fantastic!
Debbi, did he do genealogy research for you? Had you done quite a bit of family history research ahead of time or did he start from scratch for you? Is he an experienced genealogist or just more of a tour guide? What kind of family related things did he take you to in your 1-day excursion?
Yes! He does genealogy research too for a very very reasonable rate. I had done some genealogy before contacting Tomasz (sounds like Toe-.mawsh) but he was able to extend my lines even further back.
Before we arrived, he had entered all of my Polish genealogy into his laptop and had arranged a van (there were 5 of us). He picked us up at our hotel and had arranged for the priest of my great great grandparents church to meet with us. He showed the tree to the priest and the priest said there was actually someone in the village that still had masses said for one of the names! The priest told us where she lived and Tomasz drove to the farm and explained what we were doing. We were invited in and it turned out we are cousins and my great great grandmother grew up in that very farmhouse! Of course that isn’t something that happens every time but it happened because he had done so much research and was so prepared. While driving, he also gave us wonderful information about the area and history that my grandparents were living back then. Can’t recommend him too highly, he is the perfect guide!
Oh Debbi, what a thrill for you all! Thank you so very much for the added information. This must have added so much meaning to your trip and to your connection to the area.
I'll have to tell you that when I read your initial post it felt like it could have just been a random advertisement for this tour company. Since you're a first time poster on this forum I wasn't sure but was willing to give you the benefit of the doubt which is why I was curious and asked for more information. And yes, there are people who will join just to shill for a tour company. I'm SO very happy yours is an authentic recommendation as I know we've had people seeking Polish roots just in the last 6 months or so. Now I wish I had Polish roots, lol!! My sincere apologies for even having a moment's doubt regarding your post.
By the way...welcome to the RS forum and I hope you'll stick around!
Happy to be here...I usually post on TripAdvisor so yes, this is my first posting for Rick Steves. Thanks for your note and no worries, when I get excited about finding something or someone who is amazing, I’m sure I do sound like a paid advertisement, lol.
Hahaha...understand! I sound like a total shill for Rick's tours but I'm just a happy customer!
What a wonderful adventure! You were so blessed to find Poznan Tours. I can't believe there are people that actually do research for you ahead of time. My husband and I are headed to Ireland and Scotland in a few days and he just finished up a lot of research on his family roots. We will be driving through some of the areas that his family is from. We won't do any stopping in the villages because we'll be on tours and his family left these areas over 200 years ago (pre-revolutionary war). But it will be cool to see the geography
Hi Janet....have a wonderful trip! I absolutely loved Ireland (some of the friendliest people I’ve ever met) and Scotland is on my bucket list for sure!