The Sheraton Vistana Villages – International Drive, (not to be confused with the Sheraton Vistana Resort) is where we decided to stay for our 2 week trip to Orlando. This is a large villa complex located on international drive, midway between both the Disney and Universal theme parks.

The drive from Orlando International Airport (MCO) took about 30 minutes, and the route is fairly straight forward. You will most likely go via a toll road, but this wasn’t a problem as our Alamo car rental included the Sunpass facility.

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The park opening time was 9am, so we decided to be there for about 8:30 because there’s a decent walk from the car park to the actual park. However we also needed to nip to a USPS along the way to send some postcards home. So the plan was to wake up at 6:30, be ready by 8 and leave, since Universal is only 20 minutes away.

What actually happened was we woke up at 6:30, jumped out of bed, and got ready so fast that we made it to USPS before 8am. This then meant we were at Universal around 8:20! The park didn’t open till 9, but you can go in and wait inside the grounds. You’re able to get early entry to the park but since we have not yet had to stand in big queues anyway we didn’t think it was worth it.

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Our second full day in Orlando! Still can’t believe that we are here, it’s amazing and I keep thinking how wonderful it is to be here. So we decided to go to Universal Studios. Where we are staying is situated really nicely between Disney and Universal so all the parks are around 15-20 minute drives away.

Universal Studios opened at 9am, so we decided to get there for opening. Once parked you go over a couple of travelators, you then go through an airport style security check (which is good and very very quick). From here you walk through City Walk, which is restaurants and shops, and a cinema. Before arriving at the entrance to the park you pass the big Universal globe where everyone stops for photos (this can be done later so we just rushed passed everyone).

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