We very surprisingly have 5 days (2 + 3 free) to spend in the parks. It feels like a plethora of riches. We are however not staying on sight and staying a bit of a drive away so trying to figure out a way to take a mid day break nearby. Any ideas? Also pluses and minuses to coming early or staying late. We have 9 and 10 year old who will want every minute of every day, but really will do better with less.
If this is your first time check out CityWalk. It an entire shopping / dining complex that you have to walk through just to get to USF / IOA. There are lots of nice sit down eateries for all ages where you can take an extended meal break.
I did the same deal a couple months ago. You really only need 2 - 3 days to see everything at both parks. Having five days will give you enough time to do late starts or early endings.
My absolute favorite times in the parks are the evening hours. The last hour or so of each day tends to have low crowds and you can get a lot done. It is also cooler and much more magical with the lights lighting everything up. If you’re going to be staying a a distance away, I would personally consider doing a day or two where you come later in the day and plan to stay until park close.
If you book your tickets with American Express inside Universal Studios is an American Express lounge. There are couches free water and snacks. It would be great for a mid-day break.