Whether it’s your first visit or your fifth, The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s trip to the Ukraine and Poland will show you something you haven’t seen before. To develop a stronger foundational knowledge of the Holocaust is to face a sober reckoning with human nature. And yet, nothing is more fundamental. Whether we’re interested in tracing our familial ties, or our interests lie in the broader realm of confronting hatred and preventing genocide, an in-depth and in-person exploration of the Holocaust’s history is a great place to start. And, if you travel along with the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, your journey will include unprecedented access to locations and scholars unavailable to regular tourists or other group programs.

Jacek Nowakowski, Senior Curator for Collections at the Museum, will join us, as will Peter Hayes, Chairman of the Museum’s Academic Committee, Professor of Holocaust Studies at Northwestern University, and author of the recent book Why? Explaining the Holocaust. We’ll visit the actual sites where the Holocaust took place, trace the history and origins with Museum scholars and other experts, and discuss antisemitism in Europe today.

The trip will take place from May 26 to June 3, 2018. It begins in Lviv, Ukraine, with stops at the Janowska Labor Camp, Brygidki Prison, Klepatrow Rail Road Station, and several other sites. During our first days in Poland, we’ll see the Belzec and Majdanek Extermination Camp Memorials, the Warsaw Ghetto, take a curatorial tour of the Polin Museum of the History of Polish Jews, visit the Jewish Historical Institute, take a day trip to Treblinka, and more. Then it’s onto Krakow, where a sampling of activities include Kazimierz, the Galicia Jewish Museum, Oskar Schindler’s Enamel Factory Museum, and the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial Museum. We’ll experience all of this with local historians and scholars who can shed light on significant details at every turn.

The Museum is offering this opportunity to our supporters, many of whom have expressed interest in traveling with us. We’re accepting registrations on a first-come, first-serve basis. Trip costs are $6,150/person for double occupancy or $6,835 for single occupancy. Accommodations are top-notch, and trip costs include all meals, ground transportation, briefings by subject matter experts, public and private tours and entrance fees, and guide gratuities. Travelers are responsible for their own airfare and personal incidentals. Anyone interested in joining can contact Nadia Ficara for more information. Nadia can be reached at nficara@ushmm.org or 202-488-0470.

If you’ve ever pledged to learn more about the Holocaust and are interested in traveling abroad, I hope you’ll consider this exclusive Museum offering. It’s a rare opportunity to visit sites that are typically closed to the public and contextualize one of history’s most horrific mass atrocities. As we’re all too aware, genocide isn’t relegated to the past. We can look to recent history in Rwanda, Srebrenica and Darfur to see that. Or the disturbing trends surfacing in Burma, Syria and Iraq right now. It’s never been more important to dig into the past to illuminate a better path forward for the future. Together we can raise awareness and strengthen global prevention.