Kinga Tanajewska is a famous motorcyclist, traveller and YouTuber.
She has more than 200 thousand subscribers on her YouTube channel by the name onherbike.
Kinga Tanajewska was born on 1 September 1981 in Suwałki, Poland (then Communist Poland) and grew up here.
While growing up, she was a hippy and was a fan of Blues music.
Her mother’s name is Hanna Tanajewska.
Kinga has a sister, Ula Kula.
Education & career-
After completing her schooling, Kinga moved to another city in Poland to study for a Master of Engineering in building.
In 2005, at 25, she immigrated to Australia and here, she studied for another master’s degree and after working in a few odd jobs, she started working as a transport director in an iron ore mine.
Kinga also worked in the construction industry.
She was a civil engineer and thanks to her love for concrete, she specialized in concrete.
Kinga holds a couple of master’s degrees in Civil & Structural Engineering.
Love for motorcycles & travelling-
At six, Kinga fell in love with motorcycles and her father used to take her on his Jawa 350 motorcycle for a ride around Suwałki (Suwalszczyzna).
Her first bike on which she learnt riding is a Junak M07 with a sidecar.
While studying in high school, Kinga was bitten by the travel bug and started travelling with her high school biker friends.
They used to drive either old Russian motorcycles or motorcycles imported from Japan.
After graduating from high school, Kinga’s parents rewarded her with a 1982 Honda CB450 Nighthawk, she was 17 at that time.
Later, she also owned Kawasaki 550 Zephyr and Suzuki RF600 and was a member of a local motorcycle club in Poland.
A long trip in Australia-
Even after immigrating to Australia and starting her job here, Kinga didn’t give up her passion for riding motorcycles and she saved up for a Yamaha FZ6 motorcycle.
A few years later, she was attracted towards a BMW motorcycle and wanted to buy it but as she wasn’t in a position to afford it, she convinced the personnel that she would drive it around Australia and succeed in getting a loan for her journey.
So, Kinga bought a BMW F800GS and also got BMW branded trunks, jacket, helmet, etc.
She started her solo journey from Sydney and rode through the eastern and northern parts of Australia.
Kinga named her trip ‘Tour De Oz’ and during her trip, she raised money for The Shepherd Centre.
A year later, she travelled through the western and southern parts of Australia.
At that time, Kinga had to ride solo because her then partner didn’t ride motorcycles and she didn’t know other bikers.
She credits her adventurous spirit to living in Australia and she holds a dual citizenship of Poland and Australia.
A tragic accident-
In September 2015, while leaning on her motorcycle, Kinga had a head-on collision with a car.
This accident broke her leg and arm and caused her a lot of trauma and her bike was also written off.
Kinga suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and started receiving treatment from a psychologist.
Even though she was on a wheelchair and wasn’t confident that she could ever ride a motorcycle again, thanks to her passion for motorcycles, she wanted to get back on a bike.
Due to the PTSD, Kinga wasn’t able to handle the stress at work and so, she had a mental breakdown and got depressed and she also got divorced with her husband.
Due to PTSD, she wasn’t in a position to ride a motorcycle and had to relearn riding a motorcycle and doing turns on it.
Later, as Kinga started riding a motorcycle, it proved a great stress relief to her.
After a long time in therapy, Kinga was able to recover from PTSD.
As it wasn’t her fault in the accident and as she was covered by insurance, in early 2017, she received the insurance money.
After receiving the insurance money, Kinga had an urge to go on a world trip on a motorcycle and realised that this was a now or never moment as she didn’t have a husband.
She also quit her job to travel.
Thanks to the support of the BMW Motorrad, Kinga was able to purchase a new BMW F800GS motorcycle and she named it Chillie.
Setting off on a world travel-
Kinga wanted to immediately set off on world travel as she knew that she wouldn’t do it, if she postponed it for later.
As she had an accident before, her parents didn’t want her to go on a round the world trip but Australians inspired her and filled her up with positivity to go on a world trip.
Kinga wanted to finish her world tour in a couple of years as her budget allowed her to sustain for only two years.
So, she sold her place in Sydney and packed up and left Australia in April 2017 for her round the world trip.
A solo round the world trip-
Kinga named her trip as “Are We There Yet” as she didn’t know her final destination or the exact duration of her journey.
She shipped her BMW F800GS from Sydney to South Korea and from Korea, she caught a ship to Vladivostok in Russia and then she rode her motorcycle through Siberia, Lake Baikal, then Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Iran, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Poland.
Then, Kinga travelled through the Balkans, across Italy on a ferry and then travelled to Israel, Jordan, then she ferried to Egypt and then she entered the east coast of Africa and rode to South Africa.
Her insurance money covered most of her travelling costs and solo journeying wasn’t a problem for her as she is self-reliant as she knows things like changing the wheel all by herself, taking care of her safety, etc.
COVID-19 affected Kinga’s travel and thanks to this, she got stuck in Africa and had to spend a couple of years in Africa.
5 years aren’t enough-
Initially, Kinga thought that she could travel round the world in a couple of years but as of July 2022, that is, after around five years of starting her travel, she couldn’t completely travel the world and is yet to travel to North America and South America.
Travelling made possible by YouTube-
In the initial years, Kinga used to couch-surf and used to teach English to the children of the hosts but thanks to the success of her YouTube channel, she stopped couch-surfing and riders themselves contact her and offer her accommodation.
She generally accepts invites to stay with families and she also does wild camping and if she doesn’t feel safe, she camps in the organized camping grounds.
Kinga started her YouTube channel by the name onherbike on 19 March 2013.
Initially, she started publishing videos infrequently but after she started her round the world trip, she started publishing videos consistently.
And thanks to this, by the time her insurance money was getting exhausted, Kinga started earning a decent income from her YouTube channel and this allowed her to continue her travel.
Now, she is a very successful YouTuber.
As of August 2022, Kinga has 284K subscribers on her YouTube channel, has 117K followers on her Facebook page and 121K followers on Instagram.
Initially, she used to focus on her blog but later, she shifted her focus to her YouTube channel.
Kinga earns mainly through the advertisements on her YouTube channel and she also earns through selling merchandise through her website.
As she is a sponsored rider, she receives tires (Bridgestone sponsors her tires) and gear for free.
Kinga receives support from brands like REV’IT!, Formaboots, Lone Rider – Adventure Motorcycle Equipment, Leatt Protectives and Quad Lock.
She has a couple of editors for editing her videos.
While travelling Kinga carries a Windows laptop, a drone, a 360-Degree GoPro camera and a couple of usual GoPro cameras and a regular camera.
Even though Polish is her native language and English is her second language, she speaks English in her videos as English videos attract a global audience which is financially viable.
Kinga’s future plan is to ride through the United States.
So, how are you inspired by the success story of Kinga Tanajewska?
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Looking for inspiration to start your travel?
‘To Shake the Sleeping Self’ is the best book for travel inspiration.