15 Countries You Should Visit Before You Die

Israel

Why to go when you’re young: Anyone with a Jewish grandparent (or anyone who converts to Judaism) under the age of 27 is eligible for a completely free seven- to 10-day trip to Israel through Birthright.


Where to head first: Start in Jerusalem. There you can tour ancient sites and some of the world’s holiest destinations, then enjoy nightlife on Ben Yehuda St and top-notch falafel at the open-air Mahane Yehuda Market.
While Israel’s Law of Return is ready and waiting for anyone who wants to immigrate to Israel at any age, try visiting first. No matter where you stand on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the best way to understand the region is to immerse yourself in the culture — and did we mention that you can take a free trip? Even if you’re not qualified for Birthright or other similar sponsored pilgrimages, know that there are plenty of English-speaking 20-somethings visiting Israel. After visiting Jerusalem, be sure to hit up liberal party city Tel Aviv (also home to Israel’s only major international airport) for a taste of cosmopolitan Israeli life.

Take a float in the Dead Sea for the pic you’ve seen everyone else post (smear yourself with spa-grade mud while you’re at it), then hit Eilat in the country’s southernmost tip, e.g., the Miami of Israel, where spring break is always on and drinking all day by a pool or on a boat is totally acceptable, if not constantly encouraged. This is a country that will truly convert you.

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