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The Romanian Monkey Run

The Monkey Run is an adventure that takes the impractical brilliance of a Monkey Bike; a vehicle so delightfully ludicrous for even the shortest of jaunts; and tosses it head first into some of the most demanding and challenging stretches of road that have been laid out on planet Earth, and we’ve recently tested the very latest incarnation:

01.Where?

Romania is still a relatively new one for us, so ruddy new you can hear the squeaks of its spanking new shimmering arse from Bristol; but it’s already, after just a couple of editions, proved itself as a formidable Monkey Run

Romania is home to the Transfaragasan and Transalpina highways, epic slithers of road strewn across the Romanian landscape like a plate of dropped spaghetti. Jeremy Clarkson once proclaimed the Transfaragasan as "The best road in the world", not that we care, it's just that he did...

And sure, you could grab yourself a multi-million pound supercar and shred up the highways like that curly haired twat, but that wouldn't give you access to the miles and miles of demanding off-road terrain the Monkey Bike just hates to love.

You may have noticed that there is a little bit more tarmac than we're used to here at The Adventurists, but don't be fooled. The roads in Romania not only offer some of the most incredible asphalt roads in the world but also thousands of miles of forest trails that will challenge every ounce of you and your trusty steed.

02.Schedule

  • 13th September

    Friday

    Get yourself to the start line

  • 14th September

    Saturday

    Test driving & party

  • 15th September

    Sunday

    The Launch

  • 21st September

    Saturday

    The finish, prize-giving and party

03.The Bikes

"These bikes are completely impractical. That’s why you don’t see thousands of them driving up and down the country. It’s because they’re useless"
Yup, you heard it here first, they're useless, and that's exactly the point. We've gone to some serious effort to get these bike to Romania, all in the name of adventure. The Monkey Bikes sheer unsuitability and impracticalness is a match made in hell with Romania's torn up tracks and super slick ultra roads. It's an experience you simply can't get with any other bike.

Here's some quick stats to prove just how spectacularly unsuitable they really are.

Engine: 48cc of 4 stroke genius
Power: 2.6 BHP
Weight: 75kg
Brakes: Disc front, drum rear

04.The Guff

Paperwork

License - You'll need whatever paperwork is required in your country of origin to ride a 50cc motorcycle. IDP - While International driving permits aren't compulsory in Romania, they act as a useful translation of your driving licence. You want one with a Category "A" stamp.

Bike insurance - The bikes come with 3rd party motor insurance.

Personal insurance - You'll need travel insurance to cover you for the whole of the Run. You should make sure it specifically covers you for what you are doing and where.

Visas - Many nationalities don't need a visa for Romania for up to 90 days. Head over to our pals at The Visa Machine to find out what you need.

Vehicle deposit - We charge a £300 returnable vehicle deposit to make sure we get our bikes back at the end of the adventure, this is fully returnable and we won't charge you for general wear and tear.

Fuel, Food and Lodgings

Fuel

Finding fuel and mechanics shouldn't be a problem. Though the mechanics might not have suitable spares for your bike, so you might want to take some basic spares.

Food

Food in Romania is cheap and utterly delicious. Make sure you ask for Sarmale (cabbage rolls) and for you meat eaters out there, try Ciorba de Burta (beef tripe soup). To wash it all down grab some Romanian Moonshine, or to using proper lingo "Țuică".

Lodging

Most places you can stop for food and fuel will have somewhere you can stay, even if it's on someone's floor. Because these bikes are pretty shit you might want to bring some camping stuff.

What you get for the entry fee

A mighty if diminutive bike to love

Bike paperwork including 3rd party vehicle insurance

Test driving and advice pre-launch

A launch party to kill half your brain and a finish party to kill the other

The most ridiculous week of adventuring chaos imaginable with likeminded reprobates

Enough stories to enthral your mates with for years

A sore bottom

05.Saving the world

Not only is the Monkey Run an industrial dose of adventure, it’s also about Saving the World. We ask every team to raise a minimum of £1000 for charity, at least £500 of which goes to our official charity Cool Earth.

To date, The Adventurists have raised over £7.5 million for charity and, along with the teams on our other adventures, you'll be saving the world one rainforest at a time. Not because we’re tree hugging sandal weavers, but because the world would be shit without them.

Where would we get lost if we didn't have jungles?

Once you’ve signed up to the Monkey Run we will give you more information about Cool Earth, as well as a stash of tips on how to extract donations from friends, family and strangers.

The Plan - how to actually save the world

We’ve been banging on about saving the world for ages and we’ve raised stupendous amounts of money for a load of amazing charities. So we sat down at HQ and pondered on what we could do that will actually save the world and continue the fight to make it less boring.

Then it hit us like a well-polished brogue to the nuts: “we must save every rainforest in the world so future generations have somewhere to get stuck”. It’s not just about the carbon, the point is rainforests are indescribably excellent.

You can find a stack of resources for Cool Earth and a fundraising pack here or give them a shout with any questions or say hello. They're keen to hear from you.

Who are they?

Cool Earth is an environmental charity that works in partnership with indigenous communities.

The charity only protects rainforest that without intervention will be destroyed within the next 18 months.

Cool Earth works strategically, protecting the forest that acts as a barrier to a wider landscape.

The charity spends just 10% of your donation on admin and governance making sure as much as possible goes to project areas.

Through working with local people Cool Earth makes sure conservation goes hand in hand with better livelihoods.

What's in one acre of rainforest?

The same amount of CO2 as driving around the world 32 times

The same amount of water as 950 baths

11,000 species of insect and worm

6 endangered animals

44 trees

199 saplings

Possibly a family living in a settlement and working with Cool Earth to keep this acre standing

06.The warning

These are genuinely dangerous things to do. The website is written in a light-hearted fashion but you cannot overestimate the risks involved in taking part in this adventure.

Your chances of being seriously injured or dying as a result of taking part are high. Individuals who have taken part in past Adventurists' adventures have been permanently disfigured, seriously disabled and even lost their life.

This is not a glorified holiday, it's an unsupported adventure and so by its very nature extremely risky. You really are on your own and you really are putting both your health and life at risk. This is what makes them adventures.