We got a tender to Catalina and there was no wait at all. We got a 6 person golf cart for $60/hour (they have got to be making a ton of money on this!!!) For each minute over an hour, it was $1. We spent 67 minutes so it was $67. It was something different and fun to drive around and see the sites. Catalina is like a trip back in time. It seemed like the 50's and we all felt very safe. We ate at a hot dog place which was really good too. After a few hours in town and shopping we went back to the ship and again no wait for the tender.
In Ensenada we took a tour to La Bufadora with the shuttle bus people who provide the bus from the ship to town. It was $15/person and we got 2 hours at La Bufadora to eat and shop. The guide was very knowledgable and nice. The same tour is $30 when booked thru the ship so we saved a few bucks and got the same thing. They have a new deal at La Bufadora where the vendors aren't allowed to leave their booths or touch the customers anymore. I would still refer to it as "the gauntlet" but definitely not like how it was a few years ago when we last went.