Capital: Jerusalem; Lufthansa does not offer flights to Jerusalem but to Tel Aviv
Population: 8.1 million
Size: 20,766 square kilometres
Language: Hebrew, Arabic; commercial language: English – יהי (Shalom)
National holiday: Independence Day (Yom HaAtzma'ut): 16th April 2013 (it changes every year because Independence Day follows the Jewish calendar)
Israel is a very sunny country. Over half of the country is made up of the Negev Desert. Particularly at the beginning and the end of summer extremely hot desert winds blow over Israel. Then it can get very hot indeed.
Small country, big variety: although Israel is only about the same size as Wales you will find very diverse regions there. Israel borders the Red Sea and the Mediterranean, has the lowest lying fresh water lake in the world, the Sea of Galilee, while the Dead Sea attracts tourists with its extremely salty water and crystal like salt deposits, but there is also even a ski resort in the Golan Heights.