• philosophy
  • why bikes
  • mission
  • how the idea was born
  • us
The project had been maturing long - something like four years. At the beginning it was just an idea of being on the road, of an authentic journey… and we were just talking about it, thinking, sharing with others and little by little, step by step it gained its final shape. And then, about a year before we were ready to go, hard work started – hours in front of computer, hours in The Bike Station, checking, reading, screwing, searching, greasing, buying, reading, discussing, tightening, searching etc. etc.
But it was worth it!
What we were sure of from the very beginning is the fact that we don’t aim to beat any records or make ‘a very first attempt’ of anything. We have no commitments to finish it in a certain time, to finish it at all, to reach a summit, to cross a desert or cycle a length of a river; the only commitments we have are the one we’ve made with ourselves.
This journey is for us, for our own spiritual and physical experience; to beat our own personal records, cross barriers and open up to new experiences….
But yes, we have website. This is because there are some things we would like to share with the world, there are some issues we would like to call attention to and there are some ideas we would need some help with…

What makes us to pedal every day is the longing for authentic travelling and freedom; travelling where what you do depends only on you; travelling where you don’t need to rush, don’t need to be anywhere, don’t need to do anything, where there is no obligation -everything is your choice.
Travelling without destination, just being on the road; experiencing the world, meeting people, smelling forest, feeling cold water of a stream, tasting strange dishes, listening to a local band in a street bar; travelling with no time limits; travelling where, if anything, you don’t want to reach the destination, because it means the end of adventure…

We travel, initially, to lose ourselves; and we travel, next, to find ourselves. We travel to open our hearts and eyes and learn more about the world than our newspapers will accommodate. We travel to bring what little we can, in our ignorance and knowledge, to those parts of the globe whose riches are differently dispersed. And we travel, in essence, to become young fools again - to slow time down and get taken in, and fall in love once more.
/Pico Iyer/

why bikes
Well, it is a big challenge and challenging ourselves is one of the reasons. The bikes weren’t part of the project from the very beginning, but since we’d got the idea the whole concept of our adventure changed.
Bike simply allows seeing things; is has just the right speed not to miss the smallest detail and have time to enjoy it and yet it keeps you moving with a reasonable speed. On the bike you can see, smell, hear and feel - there isn’t any other vehicle that can give you such reach experience. Somewhere in BC, Canada we cycled through a dragonfly land; there were thousands of them just flying around us; we are pretty sure that motorbikers and car drivers missed it…

Bike is the most sustainable and environmentally friendly vehicle ever invented. And ours are even more, since they are recycled! We try to live in harmony with our Planet, we try to be aware of every action we do and its impact on environment. And inevitably this philosophy was applied to our project. So, since we’d known about The Bike Station and since we’d got the reassurance that we can make 27000km on recycled bikes, there was no doubt - we were going to built our bikes ourselves. And so we did. With support from TBS we made our bikes using mostly recycled parts. We explain more about them in “our bikes” section.

Over our journey, by every action we take, we would like to promote respect to the Planet Earth, being in harmony with the Nature, live sustainably, reduce waste and consumption, promote recycling and even stronger reusing and bring awareness and understanding that every action we take has its impact on the environment. So that is why we are biking and we decided to build our bikes out of recycled parts. Recycling as much as we can was and is the principal rule of our project; so as much as we can the equipment we use is recycled and recyclable; with our bikes on the top of the list. Moreover, bikes cause no pollution what so ever (apart from broken parts, which we will try to recycle, when possible), and no noise pollution as well, biking you learn how little you need, we learn to appreciate and respect  nature, as we realize more how much we depend on it (each hill make us to slow down, each storm makes us to stop and each gust of wind will either help or disturb our cycling).

While working on our bikes, there was this idea born. With the parts found in TBS we managed to build top quality touring bikes; however hard TBS mechanics work, is not enough for the pile of donated bikes to shrink, quite the opposite – it still grows; they have collected over 30 000 bikes in six years and managed to put back on the road over 11 000; on the top of that seeing abandoned bike on streets and staircases of Edinburgh in not an uncommon thing; most of them will end up as a scrap metal for recycling; there is plenty (if not excessively plenty) good quality unwanted bikes in Edinburgh. On the other hand there are communities in the world, where having a bike is a luxury, where maybe this bike has to be shared between all members of a family and often is the main way of transport.
So we thought we could try do something about it; on our way from the north to the south we will look for communities that are needing bikes and the one that have excess of them. We will also look for organization like TBS that work with recycling bikes. And then, by linking those who wants to get involved and those who are in need, we’d like to provide second hand bikes and run workshop of bike maintenance. So the whole idea is not just simply providing new bikes, but teaching how to take care of a bike to make it work properly and last longer. And on the other side there will be less wasted cycles!

how the idea was born
The idea was born in Raul’s head, so let him speak…

It's been nearly 4 years ago; that day, like hundreds of times before (and after;)), I was standing in front of a map of the World, looking at it and thinking about the idea of traveling – the World is so big, but nowadays you can just take a plane in one place and few hours later be in another, so different reality. In terms of traveling time and space have lost its importance; there is new unit travelers use to measure distance – ‘hours by plane’ (how far is it? it's just three hours by plane away). And what's more this time on the plane is consider to be wasted.  Sadly, journey, which used to be very important part of traveling, became just necessary evil. 
 The experiences you could gain, the people you could meet, the places you could see on the way are gone together with the art of traveling for the pleasure of being on the road. And sadly most of the people don't realize the lose…. 
So staring like that at the map I thought about a journey, in which where to start and where to end is not important, about a journey, in which the destination does not reign as a main reason for traveling. I asked myself why not from the North to the South. Before when I had thought about a long distance trip it always was West to East or the other way around but never North to South. And it was in this inspiring moment when I decided to cross the two American continents from Alaska to Argentina.
The idea was maturing slowly in my mind; in the meantime I met my soul-mate, Marta and I asked her if she wants to cross the World from the North to the South with me, she didn’t hesitate even a second and said YES! And since then we’ve been making this dream to come true together…
In this first-born idea I saw myself walking, hitchhiking, and using public transport, anything. But it was some time later when I was walking in the woods with my friend Carlos and talking about the project. He asked me, "man!, you look as if you came to this world on a bicycle why you don´t do your "big thing" cycling?” And yes, it was in there, in that moment I felt so deeply rooted inside of me that he just verbalized something that was always there, though I did not put it into words before that. I loved this idea! Marta, being more rational, needed some time to digest this crazy idea, that would never ever crossed her mind, but she said YES! Again! And now she just cannot wait to start cycling her new bike!


Marta   I was born well over twenty years ago and I was lucky to spend my childhood in a tiny place in Poland, called Kalno; with a little lake and mountains nearby and plenty of room to run, jump and play. Like everyone I went to school, I studied and then, not quite like everyone and not quite as I’d expected, I happened to live for four years in Edinburgh. And now I’m somewhere in North America…
My first cycle was a cute, I think red, little tricycle and I loved just pointlessly cycle around the yard. But the bike I remember the most was my first bicycle-I did not like it! I had difficulties mastering the art of riding a vehicle with two wheels only; however, my Grandpa thought that it is unbelievable for such a ‘big girl’ not to know how to ride a bike, so I had cycling lessons every afternoon! I was frustrated, fed up and tired and still couldn’t manage to keep balance. Until one afternoon; I can steel remember the feeling…I sat on the bike with the attitude ‘I don’t want to do it, I don’t know how to do it’, as usual my Grandpa held the bike I started to pedal and… it just happened! I was cycling myself! And surprisingly I felt confident straight away – I could speed up, slow down, turn, brake and all this on two-wheel vehicle! And I was so enjoying it! That was magic; thank you, Grandpa…

Raul   I was born in  a bigger place than Marta, much easier to find on Google map ;) one of those cities where the Muslim and Christian cultures has shaped its folks, architecture and culture, the name of this place is Granada. In my 34 years I´ve already been in quite a few places around the Earth; I did many things; I´ve studied here and there, this and that (at this moment my passion and profession is Shiatsu); worked in many fields - like many people in my generation, who do not want to do just one thing for the rest of their lives, but enjoying the gift of Life. Many of those happy moments in my life have been and are strongly connected with bicycles.  I have been in love with bikes since I was 4; having just a small fall-out as a teenager when I was too cool to ride anything but a motorbike, but it l was not to long after few thousands of burnt litters of fuel, when I asked my brother “if I give you my motorbike, can I have the old bicycle BH Sierra Nevada 95” and he said,”ok”.  I am sure he thought it was a great deal for him I believe he wanted to burn few more thousands of litters of fuel to meet my carbon footprint, mine was done!  And since then I went back to what makes me feel free the most. I love when the wind touches my face when I am cycling fast downhill. I can still remember this first time I felt the wind on my face; I was 4 perhaps 5, when my uncle, pretending he was holding the back of the bike to keep me upright without stabilizer, let me free downhill, these few seconds of terror and then this amazing wordless feeling when the wind was sculpting each single bit of my face Waaaa!!! I felt free!  It was one of the best moments in my childhood and since then I try to have it as much as I can.