Similar to the ancient sailing Polynesians, the honu would be able to navigate through rough waters in the Pacific. Honu represent longevity of life, safety, and positive mana (energy).
An uncle once told me that if you see a honu swimming in the water, "do not touch it, but know that you are in safe and clear water." Hawaiians considered honu to be a bearer of good luck and peace. Their wisdom protects and leads them throughout their lives.