#2 is one of those places where the location looks great for some interesting wave/rock shots, but probably only comes alive at sunrise or sunset - I think the light is too harsh there, causing bright white highlights and dark shadows.
Go back there around 5am and take some long exposures - I think you'll get some great results.
That's part of the beauty of the long exposures at the evening hours.
I guess it depends on what you're trying to capture. Long exposures at the edge of the light create a super smooth look to the water. A 10-20 second exposure can be pretty cool because the water ends up having no discernible waves, just a smooth texture.
I would spend the money on a decent polarizer. Most people can't see a difference in quality, but I can. I personally use Hoya polarizers. Get them at B&H. Don't waste your money on a UV filter. They were good for film, but useless for digital.