We'd thought carefully about excursions before booking and really wanted good snorkelling. WE therefore originally booked the St John snorkel tour which had great reviews. This was cancelled at the last minute due to high sea swells - ok, there was nothing Celebrity could do about this, but their organisation re letting us know was very poor. They knew the evening before that it wouldn't be going ahead, but didn't leave a message until 1/2 hour before. We'd already left the cabin to get breakfast and find the meet point on the pier. Hung around for a while trying to find the tour, then found out it was cancelled and had to go back onboard to book another tour (i.e. got what was left that nobody else wanted).
We went on the coral world and then st magens beach excursion. Coral world was ok in parts, but they had performing sea lions/captive sharks kept in tiny tanks etc which I don't like - I wouldn't bother booking it myself.
Magens bay beach was very nice - I'd recommend going here.
We did the 4 x 4 St Kitts discovery tour. This was well run by the people doing it and we did see a lot of the island. The rating I've given was really for St Kitts rather than the tour. Cockleshell Bay where we ended up was a rather sorry beach with lots of litter, beach touts and rather poor facilities. Not enough time there to swim or anything - we just stayed around the vehicle chatting - however the man running the excursion was very chatty and informative about the island etc, which was interesting.
We'd booked a beach break through Celebrity originally to a particular beach (can't remember which one) - I'd looked at the beach online and thought it looked good. Pre sailing Celebrity emailed to say they were changing the excursion to a beach bar break - which could have been at any beach on the island. We therefore cancelled and booked a day at the Hilton Barbados (recommended by someone on the Cruise Critic board) through barbadosforaday.com.
This was great. WE got a taxi independently (cost $7.50 each, though I think we could have got that cheaper). The taxis at the cruise port are all officially organised but expensive. I think if you step outside the cruise port you could get cheaper taxis. Other people had booked island tours by taxi for $30 each, so our fare definitely looked expensive.
Facilities at the Hilton were lovely. Clean, good pool area with a restaurant/bar. The deal included a meal and drink (non/al) there - which was very good. The beach is right there - beautiful, white sand with snorkelling at the rocks. Loungers are free by the pool and on the beach.
Dominica is a beautiful, but poor island. This excursion was great. The captain of the boat was very skilled at spotting whales and getting alongside them to give us a great view of them. We saw lots of sperm whales - adults and calves - it was a wonderful experience. They don't guarantee sightings of course, but if the whales are there I'm pretty sure that captain will find them.