London, Just Like In The Movies

When did you first fall in love with London?  I honestly didn’t have a desire to visit this destination until I started planning a girls trip for a client of mine and I saw all of the exciting things there is to do.  There are so many movies that focus heavily on this must visit location.  


Movies have such a powerful effect on our imagination and no doubt they have influenced many people by inspiring them to travel to their favorite movie or television locations.


If London is on your travel bucket list be sure to check out these movies to get you and your travel companion in the mood. Trying to convince a group of friends to go with you? These movies will help!


What’s your favorite movie set in London? Comment below.


Ps. My favorite is 28 Days Later!



Four Weddings and a Funeral

Floppy-haired Charles (Hugh Grant) is looking for The One in Richard Curtis’s sweet, soppy movie. The capital provides a picture-perfect backdrop as Grant and his band of twenty-something aristo Londoners date, flirt and consider settling for sub-standard partners in an effort to get down the aisle. Proof that spending every sunny Saturday at a friend’s wedding is not a modern affliction.


London location: Charles lives (and has that romantic, rainy reunion) on Highbury Terrace in Highbury Fields, the lucky sod. He also wanders along the South Bank and has a matrimonial meltdown at Smithfield’s St Bartholomew the Great.


A Fish Called Wanda

John Cleese hauled Ealing comedy legend Charles Crichton out of retirement to co-write and direct this acid-tongued shout-out to the classic comedy crime caper. Cleese plays a barrister swept up in a robbery plot; Michael Palin outraged stutterers worldwide as an animal-loving getaway driver; and two Yanks, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Kevin Kline offer scathing observations on British life.


London location: The iconic scene where Kline dangles Cleese out of a window was shot at New Concordia Wharf in Bermondsey. TH


Sherlock Holmes

Sir Conan Doyle’s sleuth gets a post-modern update, with Robert Downey Jr playing a beefed-up version of Holmes.


London location: Shot in and around London (as well as Liverpool and Manchester), Ritchie’s London of yesteryear is a romantic place of heaving bosoms and ridiculously cool heroes.


Notting Hill

It’s from the same makers as out Love Actually, but Notting Hill is a funny, light-hearted fantasy romance that has its tongue pressed enough into its cheek just about enough.


Only In London: Notting Hill is one of London’s most multicultural hot spots, which means it’s odd that Curtis’ film doesn’t reflect that. Still, the area looks the best it ever has – though Portobello Road is where you’ll find Grant’s bookshop.


Bridget Jones Diary

Renée Zellweger stars as the perpetually-single Bridget in this canny update of Pride & Prejudice.


Only In London: Visit Borough Market and you’ll easily spot Bridget’s little flat near the pub, not to mention the restaurant that’s the setting for Firth and Grant’s hilarious dust-up.


Bend It Like Beckham

Two 18-year-old girls aspire to become professional football players in Gurinder Chadha’s gentle comedy.


Only In London: Chadha captures the city’s cultural diversity beautifully as Parminder Nagra rebels against her orthodox Sikh upbringing – with Hounslow providing the perfect suburban backdrop.



Carol Reed’s classic musical in which young orphan Oliver (Mark Lester) falls in with a gang of street urchins who’ve been trained as pickpockets.


Only In London:The city’s a smoggy place filled with danger in this movie adaptation of Dickens’ novel – you definitely believe somebody like Fagin could live here.


28 Days Later

Sci-fi horror from Danny Boyle in which an incurable virus sweeps the UK, transforming people into ravenous zombies.


Only In London: Trust us, it’s never this empty in London – not even at 4 am when the clubbers are all tucked up in bed. Which makes the sight of a deserted central London all the creepier…


The Bourne Ultimatum

Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) continues his hunt for answers while dodging the CIA.


Only In London: Waterloo Station is a battlefield at the best of times, but it becomes a hustle-bustle setting for a fantastically tense action scene in Damon’s last Bourne film, as he attempts to protect Paddy Considine’s journalist.


Mary Poppins (1964)

Joyous musical romp starring Julie Andrews as the titular nanny, who’s hired to look after two very unhappy children.


Only In London: This is London as envisioned by Walt Disney Pictures, where everybody’s smartly dressed, the townhouses are towering and gorgeous, and there’s not so much as a single turd in the parks. Dare to dream, Disney…


Brick Lane

A Bangladeshi woman arrives in London, leaving behind her family and friends.


Only In London: Cultural diversity is all part of London’s charm, and here we get a look at the East End’s Bangladeshi community, where the aftershock of 9/11 is strongly felt.


Harry Potter

Eight films adapted from JK Rowling’s bestselling book series, with Daniel Radcliffe as the lightning-scarred boy wizard.


Only In London: Sad to say, Diagon Alley doesn’t actually exist in our beloved capital. That doesn’t stop Columbus, Yates et al from lavishing the city with adoring screen time, whether it’s the Millennium Bridge getting destroyed in Half-Blood Prince or those gorgeous over-city shots in Phoenix. And, of course, there’s King’s Cross station…


The King’s Speech

Oscar-nabbing historical drama starring Colin Firth as King George VI, who struggles with a debilitating stammer.


Only In London: Rush’s Harley Street practice should look familiar – it’s a Georgian townhouse 33 Portland Place, a popular location used in everything from Amy Winehouse’s ‘Rehab’ video to some less-well-known gay porn films…


Sliding Doors

A 1998 British-American romantic drama film written and directed by Peter Howitt and starring Gwyneth Paltrow and John Hannah, while also featuring John Lynch, Jeanne Tripplehorn, and Virginia McKenna. The film alternates between two parallel universes, based on the two paths the central character’s life could take depending on whether she catches a train, and causing different outcomes in her life.


Only In London: The bridge featured is the Albert Bridge between Battersea and Chelsea. The late-night scene when Paltrow and Hannah walk down the street was filmed in Primrose Gardens (formerly Stanley Gardens) in Belsize Park.

The Top Reasons To Go To Essence Fest 2019

It’s never too early to start planning for ESSENCE Fest 2019, especially as we prepare to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the country’s largest celebration of Black women and Black culture. This year, ESSENCE Fest will take place from July 4 – July 7 in New Orleans, Louisiana, for four days of what is sure to be the most unforgettable festival yet! Let’s take a look at the top reasons to go to ESSENCE Fest this year.

#1: R&B Kings Will Serenade Your Soul

ESSENCE Fest has a way of bringing all of the greatest R&B kings together for a one-of-a-kind event. From the soulful sounds of Luther Vandross to Usher, Maxwell, and the incredible Barry White, you’ll find the cream of the crop talent performing and serenading souls at ESSENCE Fest! Now, let’s take a look at some infamous R&B artists that have been a part of ESSENCE Fest in the past:

  • Luther Vandross graced the ESSENCE Fest stage in 1995, 1996, 1998, 2000, and 2002.
  • Musiq Soulchild blew audiences away in 2003, 2006, and 2008.
  • Barry White wowed guests by performing in 1996.
  • Stevie Wonder took the stage at ESSENCE Fest in 1996 and 2003.
  • D’Angelo performed at the 1998, 2000, and 2012 ESSENCE Festival.
  • Usher played some of his top R&B hits in 1998, 2003, 2011, and 2015.
  • Brian McKnight performed at ESSENCE Fest in 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2002.
  • Al Green hit the ESSENCE stage in 1996, 2002, and 2009.
  • Anthony Hamilton left the crowd in awe in 2004, 2012, and 2018.

#2: It’s A Great Place For Vendors To Boost Their Business

ESSENCE Fest is more than just an amazing music festival ‒ you can find everything from apparel, to food to art and accessories, and everything in between. ESSENCE Fest has played host to one of the largest gathering of Black-owned vendors in the country, so if you own a business, this may be a great opportunity to spread the word about your products or services. At ESSENCE Fest, businesses of all sizes are brought face-to-face with thousands of consumers who are eager to support them.

“The Essence Festival represents culture, community and a powerful convening around one of the largest curated content experiences in the world,” says Essence Communications president Michelle Ebanks. “As we look forward to the festival’s 25th anniversary celebration in 2019, we will continue to offer curated platforms of entertainment, empowerment, entrepreneurship, activism and more that will both engage and inspire black women globally.”

The longer you wait to buy your ESSENCE Festival tickets, the more expensive they become, and the closer the tickets get to selling out! Don’t wait until it’s too late to book a once-in-a-lifetime trip with your friends and family.

Book Your Trip To ESSENCE Fest 2019

If you’re ready to book your trip to ESSENCE Fest 2019, contact JTS Vacations today. We can help you reserve your accommodations, as well as plan your luxury transportation throughout the trip, so all you have to worry about is gettin’ your groove on.

Book Your Group Trip To ESSENCE Fest 2019 Today

As a strong, independent woman, you work hard day-in and day-out. With the 25th anniversary of ESSENCE Fest coming up, why not plan a group trip with some of your besties to this one-of-a-kind celebration of black women and black culture? There’s no doubt that this will be a once-in-a-lifetime event that will be lit!

A Little Background On The Essence Festival

Also called “the party with a purpose”, ESSENCE Festival is an annual music festival that started in 1995 as a way to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Essence, which is a magazine for African-American women that covers everything from fashion to lifestyle and beauty. The ESSENCE Festival has been called the largest celebration of African-American culture and music in the United States, and it’s hosted in New Orleans, Louisiana.

According to Michelle Ebanks, president of Essence Communications, “The ESSENCE Festival engages black women globally through a truly unique celebration of culture, connection to community, and access to content that inspires and empowers.”

The 2018 ESSENCE Festival brought more than 510,000 attendees, making it one of the largest gatherings in the event’s 24-year history, according to an article from NOLA. Last year, ESSENCE Fest guests were able to see incredible performances from musicians and artists, like Doug E. Fresh, Snoop Dogg, The Roots, Erykah Badu, Mary J. Blige, and Janet Jackson.

Book Your Group Trip To ESSENCE Fest Today

ESSENCE Fest 2019 is rumored to be the event of the year, so you’ll want to start planning your trip early. During this four-day event, you’ll experience enriching conversations, screenings, celebrity meet and greets, and beauty and fashion tips. Hotels and accommodations fill up incredibly fast, so we recommend working with a group travel company to ensure you get the vacation of your dreams.

What To Expect From Our ESSENCE Fest Trip

When you book your ESSENCE Fest 2019 group trip with JTS Vacations, you won’t have to worry about booking a hotel or scheduling transportation to and from the event. In fact, you’ll get much more!
Trip dates for ESSENCE Fest 2019 will be from July 4th to July 8th, 2019. You’ll receive the following when you book with our group travel company:

  • Four (4) nights accommodations in a standard double room at the New Orleans Marriott Hotel.
  • Roundtrip Luxury Motorcoach transportation (exact pick-up and drop-off location to be announced).
  • Three-Day Jazzy Streetcar Passes to use in NOLA.
  • An ESSENCE Fest Party Guide.
  • Access to JTS Vacations’ private Facebook Group
  • An exclusive JTS Vacations welcome and thank you gift bag.

What Is Not Included With Our ESSENCE Fest Trip

  • Tickets to any ESSENCE Festival Events
  • Meals
  • Travel Insurance (but we highly recommend it!)

*Please note that JTS Vacations is not affiliated with ESSENCE magazine or the producers or event coordinators of ESSENCE Fest.

JTS Vacations is a travel design firm that focuses on offering customized, high-quality and unforgettable experiences. Our main goal is to ensure that all of the details of your trip are accounted for, so you can sit back, relax, and chill at ESSENCE Fest. We also offer other vacations as well such as exotic Dubai or design your own destination get-a-way.


When we say goodbye to winter we do it grand! We are talking about sipping margaritas on a sugar white beach – Or maybe exploring a jungle in the tropics. Whatever you decide, whether a beach, or a mountain or even a ski resort (because not everyone likes the beach – crazy right?), you should consider start booking your getaway now as the spring break crowds will be taking over many popular destinations.

Here are our top picks to make the most of the final days of the season:


Unique, impressive coral reefs, world-class golf courses and iconic pink sands, are just a few of the characteristics that Bermuda has and that you can take advantage of, if you decide for a quick winter getaway to this beautiful island.

Plus, Bermuda is relatively close to the United States. If we are talking about quick trips, distance is definitely a factor to take into consideration. The people are friendly, warm and welcoming. The island is small and is also very easy to get around by bus or ferry.

Snorkel, jet ski, take a catamaran to view the sunset, enjoy delicious cocktails and food and set sail in the beautiful Bermuda waters!


Watch the sunrise and set in beautiful Jamaica. Enjoy the natural beauty that this small island has to offer along with unique experiences for everyone, cultural diversity, and fun activities you can enjoy. Be acquainted with the warm and welcoming island people.

Experience the history, art, sports, world class cuisine, music & dance and cuisine on this magical island. Explore the island. Celebrate, lay out on the beach, and feel the thrill of the island life.

Jamaica has three different airports on the island, so you have options to where you want to go or fly into the closest airport from your home destination. This is a great option for anyone who wants to have a quick getaway in the sun in the Caribbean.


Aruba is another island in the Caribbean. It is known for its perfect weather (it gets the least amount of rainfall and the most amount of sunny days compared to the other Caribbean islands), friendly and hospitable people, and beautiful beaches. Aruba is small safe island and the locals speak four different languages so you will be able to communicate with ease.

You can get to Aruba by plane or by cruise ship. There are more than 100 direct flights from major U.S. cities so you can get there quickly without the long layover. Lay on white sands, explore coves, go on sightseeing tours, visit other natural wonders, fine dining, night life, arts and culture. There is something for everyone. If you want to relax and soak up some sun rays then Aruba is the place for you.

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is ready to enchant you with its rich culture and history and authentic cuisine. Come to Puerto Rico to experience the unique cultural events, see historical fortress and colonial architecture, beautiful beaches, night life, and shopping.

Puerto Rico is accessible via domestic and international flights and cruises. You can easily get around the island on foot, car, taxis or public transportation. Take your time to get around the island and see what is happening around you.

Don’t forget to visit the outskirts of the major cities of Puerto Rico, so you can be charmed and enchanted. Go Puerto Rico for a fun and relaxing time.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a small country located in Central America that offers a plethora of things for you to do. Visit a volcano that is near the capital, go kayaking through the rivers, visit the biggest rainforest and national parks, and spend the day at the beach. It is a paradise for all divers to see unique tropical fish and ecosystems. Be surrounded by plants and animals.

Get to Costa Rica by plane. Get around the country by renting a car. You can go wherever you want in the country on your time.

Visit Costa Rica to experience something unique and one of a kind. If you are ready to start enjoying your life and start crossing off your bucket list it’s time for you to consider traveling with JTS Vacations.