We found the city to be very easy to negotiate on our own. Because the port did not allow any outside transportation in, there was a bus which took us to a central point and served as a shuttle. It worked well, and made frequent trips back and forth. We bought tickets for the Hop on-Hop off bus (there were 2-3 different companies that were virtually the same). The Tourist Info was quite helpful with this. We also rode the funicular to the top of the local mountain for an overview. I felt there was no need to have booked any other tour, unless you wanted to visit places outside of the city. We talked to people who took a tour to fjords nearby and really enjoyed it.
The exchange rate here was very much against our favor (about 5 times our dollar at the time), so we did not buy any souvenirs.
We stopped in 3 ports in Iceland, but 2 are not on the list, so all will be reviewed here:
AKUREYRI, Iceland (Rating = 5)- Beautiful area. We took a privately-arranged tour and saw a lot of the area. Very nice and glad we stopped there. Prices were relatively good here for souvenirs. Iceland in general was clean and friendly.
ISAFJORDUR, Iceland (Rating = 3)- this is a very small town that was probably overwhelmed by the 3000+ people getting off the ship. But they were gracious and friendly, and very happy to have the boost to their economy. Unfortunately, there was not much to do there except shop and take photos, but the shopkeepers were patient and helpful. Prices were higher here.
REYKJAVIK, Iceland (Rating = 4)- I booked an 8-hour private tour, which was way too long to be on a bus. We saw more things than I had imagined were possible, but it was exhausting, and there was no time to visit the old part of the city, which looked quite interesting. We went to the geyser, which popped off every 4-10 minutes. Good photos there. The Golden Waterfall was not that impressive to me. If you're in need of seeing a big one, it's nice, but not particularly attractive, in my opinion.
ST. JOHN'S, Newfoundland (Canada) - we had originally reserved a tour, but decided to just take the trolley, which for $5 stopped everywhere our $55 tour was to go. It's a big enough town to manage our numbers, and was nice for walking down (ride a bus or trolley up as it's quite a climb!). And finally the exchange rate was not bad, so we could afford to buy a couple of souvenirs!
We rode the trolley to the old fort area where you had good views of the city, port, and surrounds.
I did not want to go to the GEO Center, as it appeared to be an advertisement for Exxon-Mobile's drilling operations (and I've seen those), but it did appear that they had some interesting geological information about the area.
We visited the Basilica of St. John which was not only beautiful, but had helpful people offering information and answering questions. Difficult to take photos with a point and shoot, so bring your "good" camera if that's what you're after.
We tried to go to the Rooms (art gallery, museum), but it was under renovation and we couldn't figure out how to get inside. Ask at the TI before you head out. Other people got in, so it was open.