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Even today canoes are still carved by hand in Hawaii. Each one bears a unique part of the soul of the local boat builders. We visit one of them and are captivated by his dexterity and the beauty of his craft. ‘Canoes create a bond between the people and the ocean,’ he explains. The same clearly applies to surfboards too. In the Downing Surf Shop, we are invited to help build one. The store was established by the surfing legend George Downing. And today his successors are running the shop in his spirit. Nowhere else on the planet do tradition and contemporary life coexist so easily as in Hawaii.

Our next stop is a tailor’s shop that specialises in the famous Hawaiian shirts. Only the genuine ones have buttons that are handmade from coconut shell. The last day of the working week is called Aloha Friday, so everyone gets to wear a Hawaiian shirt – even at business meetings.

The laid-back atmosphere here is contagious. Soon we too are captured by its charms. ‘Hang loose’ becomes our motto!

Enjoying life in Hawaii means enjoying the open air. Rambling, canoeing, surfing, snorkelling – it’s a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts like us. And after all our fantastic experiences on this trip we feel liberated – more relaxed than ever. And there’s one thing we will never forget: you can always make a new beginning.