Have you noticed any tourist literature referring to Turtle Town? If so, you may be curious to know where it is. Turtle Town is actually a made up place to lure people to go on snorkel trips. Typically, these snorkel excursions will head to Maluaka beach in front of the Makena Beach Resort. The name turtle town is misleading. Although there are turtles there, it’s not guaranteed that you’ll see one when you visit. Many locations around Maui have turtles. One of the best is Honokeana Bay just south of Napili Bay. [Update: If you have an iPhone, the Maui GPS Tour Guide will help you find the location of both Maluaka and Honokeana when you’re in the area.]
The Hawaiian green sea turtle is a threatened species. It’s fine to observe them in the water but you’re not allowed to touch them. In Honokowai, west Maui, more than 90% of the turtles have tumors. The tumors are clearly visible growing on their bodies. Scientists aren’t sure what the cause may be. As always, pollution is a suspect, but so is a certain kind of virus.