The Schengen Visa and how long you can travel visa free in Europe

Mykonos, Greece
The windmills at Mykonos, Greece

How Long can you travel in Europe or the Schengen zone visa Free?

What is a Schengen Visa?  Many people have asked after hearing about our application to remain in Italy for a period beyond the allowed 90 day stay.  Most had never heard of Schengen before and commented ‘how would they know’, ‘maybe you are being too diligent at following the rules’, ‘I never heard of that before’ and asked ‘what could happen if you stayed longer’?  Well, big brother knows all and you don’t want to mess around, here’s why;

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Traveling a year in Italy

Rialto Bridge. Venice, Italy
The Rialto Bridge in Venice, Italy


If  you’ve had a bucket list dream of traveling a year in Italy as a tourist, slowly moving from north to south, living La Dolce Vita as we have then fugeddaboutit!  The Schengen Visa agreement of which Italy and most of the other EU countries are part of, only allow a tourist to enter and remain in the Schengen zone for up to 90 days within a 181 day period making a year long stay virtually impossible!  Sorry to shatter your dreams but you’d have a better chance by floating up to the Italian shores in a dingy and claiming refugee status!

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Calgary Stampede 2016 Chuckwagon Races and Grandstand Show

Midway at the Stampede
The Stampede Grounds and Midway.
Chuckwagon Races
Chucks at the Calgary Stampede

One of central attractions of the Calgary Stampede are the nightly Chuckwagon races and Grandstand show, with one ticket you get this doubleheader including admission to the park. The evening officially starts at 7:45pm with the blast of a klaxon, kicking off the GMC Rangeland Derby that features nine heats of four chuckwagon teams.  Pick your favorite team and join the crowd in cheering on the competitors!  When the last Chuck thunders across the finish line the stage is set for the Grandstand show.  The show features the Young Canadians dancing and singing to a different theme each year.  This years theme is a salute to Guy Weadick, the founding father of the Calgary Stampede.Continue Reading

Calgary Stampede Parade 2016

Format Video

IMG_0678Today is Friday, July 8th the official kick-off for the Greatest Show on Earth, the Calgary Stampede 2016.  Sneak-A-Peek opens the evening before but the parade is the official  kickoff for 10 days of festivities that consume the city and highlight our western heritage.  I’m embarrassed to say but I have never been before, as a child no one had ever taken us and as an adult I choose to avoid the crowds and instead watch it on TV from the comforts of home.  I had a pre-conceived idea of more hassle than fun, off overwhelming crowds, people deep, fighting for space or a spot to peek thru the masses.  I heard people would camp out the night before or head down in the wee dawn hours just to get a premium spot, if you arrived later you’d be out of luck unless one of the lucky few who have company sponsored bleacher seats.Continue Reading

A visit to Waterton Lakes National Park

Waterton Lake

Just back from a couple of days camping and hiking in Waterton Lakes National Park.  If you are in the Calgary, Alberta area you need to take a trip here!  Banff is the internationally known mountain/park area but I personally believe it is surpassed in beauty and diversity by Waterton.  Its variety of flora, fauna and wildlife make it one of the most beautiful mountain parks I have visited and I try to go every summer although there is lots to do here in the winter also.Continue Reading