The aim of this article is to explore a methodological approach relevant to the study of population mobility. The approach considers not only the whole migratory process and the sequence of connected movements, but also what happens between each of them. The study of mobility is considered inseparable from the study of passage, permanence and settlement. This paper establishes the interest in elaborating concepts that express the interaction between people and places, and how these interactions contribute to an understanding of migratory processes and of ‘place histories’. In this sense, geographical identification (idiotopy) and place identification (idiotope) are put forward as useful concepts.