It all started back in 2015, when our founder Soumaya Hamdi embarked on a road trip through South-East Asia (Singapore Malaysia South Korea Japan). With husband and reluctant baby in tow, the young family explored up and down the region, searching for the best in authentic halal food and Muslim-friendly travel experiences. With a notepad and pen in one hand, and trusty heavy-duty camera in the other, Soumaya began to make notes of places and travel tips…and this is how the earliest version of Halal Travel Guide was born.
From the very beginning, our aim has been to encourage Muslims to seek the less-travelled path, and to make this easier by creating networks with locals who can share their expertise with us and, therefore, with you.
We have only one goal; to connect people through immersive travel experiences. We believe in the power of travel as a means to enrich your life. In this spirit, we invite you to immerse yourself in heritage, history and hidden gems. Our values are to:
Soumaya Hamdi was born and brought up in the UK to a family with mixed roots, spending summers in both the desert sands of North Africa and the quaint English countryside. Growing up, Muslim-friendly travel wasn’t really a thing. A lot of us can relate to holiday experiences characterised by packing tuna sweetcorn sandwiches on days out, or cooking in the holiday rental and wearing a makeshift burkini with an old scarf and non-waterproof modest swimwear. Thankfully, these cringeworthy experiences are now a thing of the past; hello private villas, ladies-only beaches and halal food options galore.
But what if you want to travel to non-Muslim majority countries; can you still expect to feel as comfortable? What about travelling as a means of exploring your heritage and identity?
Soumaya has travelled extensively in search for the answers to these questions. Her research has led her to Barbados, where a native Muslim community has brought to life a halal Caribbean holiday experience. She has travelled to Tatarstan, where she uncovered a powerful Muslim identity, and explored the Silk Road cities of Uzbekistan, where a Golden era of Muslim heritage is written in the blue-tiled walls of some of the most beautiful architecture in the world.
and more…Each of these trips has strengthened Soumaya’s resolve to open up a world of immersive travel experiences that empower the Muslim identity.