Matt of Canada

Around the World on Points!


December 2015

Japan Part 2: Tokyo

Akihabara “Electric Town”

Day 4: From Tokyo Station we took a short cab ride to our hotel, the Daichi Hotel Annex. For the afternoon we decided to take the metro to Akihabara, which was a lot of fun. All the signs and sounds are a bit of an overload to the senses!  Continue reading “Japan Part 2: Tokyo”

Japan Part 1: Kyoto


After Hawaii and Guam, our final destination was Japan, where we had 7 nights. We flew into Osaka and spent 3 nights in Kyoto, then took the bullet train  to Tokyo, where we stayed 4 nights before flying out of Tokyo/Narita Airport.   Continue reading “Japan Part 1: Kyoto”

23 Hours in Guam

No editing – the water really looks like this

We had a 23 hour layover in Guam, landing at 6:00 pm and departing at 5:00 pm. We rented a car from Budget and stayed in Tumon Bay.  Continue reading “23 Hours in Guam”

Hawaii Part 3: Oahu


Day 12: We spent most of our day walking around Waikiki and on the beach, which is always enjoyable. Waikiki is essentially a mix of Beach, Fifth Avenue, and Tokyo.  Continue reading “Hawaii Part 3: Oahu”

Hawaii Part 2: Maui



Day 5: Our short inter-island flight had some good views of Maui and the three small islands, Molokai, Lanai, and Kaho’olawe. At OGG (Maui airport) we picked up the rental car and drove to the Aston Kaanapali Shores. Easy drive with  Continue reading “Hawaii Part 2: Maui”

Trip Report Hawaii, Part 1: Kauai

View from the Kalalau Trail

Day 1: After a very long 24 hours of travelling (getting here from Montreal involved an overnight connection in LAS and 2 hours in HNL), we (the family!) landed at LIH at 3:15 pm. We picked up our rental car and went straight to Walmart Continue reading “Trip Report Hawaii, Part 1: Kauai”

Trip Report: 4 Days in Newfoundland



This past June I had to go to a conference in Halifax. But instead of booking a simple return ticket, I used Aeroplan points, which let you make one free stopover on domestic trips. Even better, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland are considered “short-hauls” from Quebec – so it only cost us 15k Aeroplan Points each (+$150 taxes) to fly to both Newfoundland and Halifax. Continue reading “Trip Report: 4 Days in Newfoundland”

Acadia National Park – A Photo Trip Report


Most Montrealers don’t realize that one of the most beautiful National Parks in the USA (and the only one in the Northeast) is only a (7 hour) drive away! It’s an amazing place with many hikes (long and short), a long, rugged coastline, scenic drives, wildlife, and the perfect sunsets and sunrises.

Bar Harbor, the town just outside the National Park, is also great. Continue reading “Acadia National Park – A Photo Trip Report”

Europe Part 5: Amsterdam


We went back to the guesthouse, loaded our car, and sadly said goodbye to Cochem. It took us about 2.5 hours to get to Eindhoven (the Germans drive fast enough to make it in minutes), where a friend of my girlfriend lives. He gave us a tour of the city and we got good Arab food at the Saturday market. Afterwards we drove to Amsterdam, Continue reading “Europe Part 5: Amsterdam”

Europe Part 4: Cochem, Germany


We arrived at our guesthouse, Pension Haus Thies, which we booked on (without a credit card guarantee). After ringing the doorbell 5 times we were greeted by this crazy old man who speaks no English whatsoever.  Continue reading “Europe Part 4: Cochem, Germany”

Europe Part 3: Road Trip! Wallonia and Luxembourg


Day 4: We had an early breakfast at our apartment, and I took the tram to the Avis location to pick up my rental car. I drove back to the apartment to load up the car before heading off to Cochem. The drive was amazing, one of the best road-trips I’ve ever taken. We left Ghent at 10:00 am and arrived in Cochem at 9:00 pm, for a total of eleven hours on the road (6:21 actual driving time according to google maps). I will describe the (scenic) route and all our stops below.  Continue reading “Europe Part 3: Road Trip! Wallonia and Luxembourg”

Europe Part 2: Belgium (Flanders)



Day 1: Today was a long day of travelling. Our flight left Copenhagen at 12:30 and we arrived at AMS at 14:00, on time to catch the 15:07 train to Antwerp. We had bought our tickets online and printed them so we did not need to wait in line to buy the tickets. At AMS we also went into the bookstore to purchase 3 day Amsterdam transit passes (that we will activate when we get back to Amsterdam). You can find your train Continue reading “Europe Part 2: Belgium (Flanders)”

Trip Report Europe 2015, Part 1: 6 Days in Copenhagen


Day 1: Flight landed at 7:15 am. We were met by our friend and took the metro and train to her place in Osterbro (zone 2). We bought a 7-day flex pass for zones 1&2 (250kr each) and an additional ticket to get from the airport to zone 1 (24kr each). We had a good amount Continue reading “Trip Report Europe 2015, Part 1: 6 Days in Copenhagen”

Trip Report: 48 Hours in Washington DC

Day 1: Michelle and I landed at Reagan Airport at 4:00 pm. We took an Uber X (free since we got a $20 credit for signing up with a referral link- you can use my link here to get a free ride up to $15 USD/$21 CAD) to our hotel, the Fairfield Inn on H Street (booked with Marriott points). The hotel was in an excellent location near lots of restaurants on 7th, and close to all the sights. Only downside was that the wifi was slow. Continue reading “Trip Report: 48 Hours in Washington DC”

Europe Trip 2015: Booking our Aeroplan Flights!


When our friend Katia invited us to stay with her while she was staying in Copenhagen, we couldn’t resist! Luckily, we have lots of Aeroplan points (see my page on Credit Cards to find out how you can get tons of points yourself!), so no need to spend thousands of dollars for two transatlantic tickets! Continue reading “Europe Trip 2015: Booking our Aeroplan Flights!”

Costa Rica: Expenses and Observations

Here is a list of costs (excluding airfare+departure tax). All costs are for two (not per person) and include taxes+tips and are in USD. Continue reading “Costa Rica: Expenses and Observations”

Costa Rica Part 3: Sarapiqui and Arenal


Day 5:

We woke up early, had breakfast at the hotel buffet (included, but mediocre when compared to all our other hotel breakfasts) a little after six and headed out for Poas Continue reading “Costa Rica Part 3: Sarapiqui and Arenal”

Costa Rica Part 2: Tarcoles River + San Jose


Day 4: We were sad to leave La Posada (we easily could have stayed a week or two) but excited to see some more of Costa Rica. We left around 8:30 am and made it to Tarcoles for a 10:30 boat tour with Jungle Crocodile Safari. The last Continue reading “Costa Rica Part 2: Tarcoles River + San Jose”

Trip Report Costa Rica May 2014 – Part 1, Manuel Antonio


Day 1:

Woke up at 3:30 am Montreal time (1:30 am CR time) to catch a 6:10 am flight to Miami. Flights Continue reading “Trip Report Costa Rica May 2014 – Part 1, Manuel Antonio”

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