More optimal to take after workout with PWO to take advantage of insulin spike and after workout load.
Plain creatine is best and best value. Simply add 3g or so with PWO or in morning grape juice on non-workout days is ok.
Most new info says no need to cycle. But the way it stores and works my feeling is you could take 2-4 weeks off every 8-12 weeks and not lose anything. Save you some money as well.
That said--I don't use it. I've never had alot of success with the stuff. I did put some water weight on and I "looked" bigger and my muscles fuller, but it never really carried over to additional strength or muscle endurance for me.