Pulling into the JW Marriott's interior dock in Venice

An Adriatic cruise on points and miles: Getting there

Points and miles pay off! Just in case you haven’t been following along on my points-hoarding progress, I took my parents on a trip of a lifetime to Italy and the Adriatic for two weeks using points and miles to offset almost 95% of the cost. I’ll be writing up my final totals within the coming […]


Manuel Antonio National Park in Costa Rica

I can only take so much resort time. I don’t know how people spend a week or even more at a resort, just lounging every day. So while my brother and I were vacationing at the Marriott Los Sueños on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, it was no surprise that I was antsy after […]

Ruins on the Acropolis

A weekend in Athens

After a couple weeks in Italy, my brother and I hopped a flight for a quick weekend stop in Athens, Greece. Even after all of the history and beauty we had seen in Italy, I was still excited to see Greece. No two cultures illicit such visions of ancient times and mythology. While in Italy, […]

Vatican city

Vatican City Opulence

For our last full day in Italy, my brother and I headed over to Vatican City to explore the grounds and museums. We got to the gates bright and early in the morning, but there was still quite a line to get in. Getting into St. Peter’s Basilica meant obliging to the strict dress code […]


Grungy Naples and Unearthed Pompeii

Due to a nation-wide train strike, my brother and I were a day late in getting to Naples and had to cut our time there a little short. Although not planned, this was actually a blessing in disguise. Naples was my least favorite city of all of those we visited in Italy. We learned from […]

venice canal

Venice: Ti adoro

After a few days in Rome, my brother and I hopped on a train and headed north to Venice. I love the trains in Europe. Although the Italian trains were not quite as punctual and formal as the German trains, they were still a great means of getting from one city to another quickly and […]

Turquoise lakes along Icefields Parkway

Icefields Parkway: One of the most scenic drives in the world

Just north of the the town of Banff in Alberta, Canada is one of the most stunning roads in the world. Icefields Parkway is a highway that runs along the Canadian Rockies, stretching between Banff and Jasper National Parks. I did the gorgeous drive as a day trip, starting in Banff and going as far […]

ponte vecchio

A day trip to Florence

After a couple of days in Rome, we decided to head north to Florence for a day trip. There was a high speed train that connected Rome to Florence in just a little over an hour. We grabbed the earliest train and made it up to Florence before nine that morning. Our first stop was […]


Roaming Rome, Italy

After a party of an international flight and a missed connection in Amsterdam, my brother and I finally lugged our weary bodies out of the airport in Rome and into the subway. The train system was pretty easy to use in Rome, aside from the lack of elevators or escalators that would have been helpful […]

Marin Headlands

Marin Headlands: Just off San Francisco’s tourist trail

If you’ve done San Francisco before, maybe more than a few times, it might be time to step away from the cable cars and sea lions to see what the region has to offer. Luckily there are tons of great day trips that are easy to do and within reach. My latest favorite, which hardly […]