12 Must-Do Activities Before Turning 21

things to do before 21

As you stare at the calendar counting down the days until your 21st birthday, you may be experiencing a mix of sadness and excitement. It can be tough leaving behind your teenage years, but it's also a thrilling time full of new opportunities. To help you make the most of the time you have left, we've compiled a list of 12 must-do activities before turning 21. These experiences are not only fun and fulfilling but also help you grow and learn before officially becoming an adult. So buckle up and get ready to make some unforgettable memories!

To-Do List Completed?
Learn to drive
Get a part-time job
Open a bank account
Take a gap year
Travel solo
Learn a new language
Take up a new hobby
Volunteer for a cause
Attend a music festival
Live on your own for a period of time


Skydiving: Any location offering skydiving services

Source: DZONE® Skydiving

Skydiving: A Must-Do Activity Before Turning 21

If you're looking for a thrilling and adrenaline-pumping activity to add to your bucket list, then look no further than skydiving. It's an experience that will not only bring you out of your comfort zone but will also create lasting memories.

Before you turn 21, skydiving is one of those "must-do" activities that you should experience at least once in your life. It's an exhilarating experience that allows you to jump out of a plane from thousands of feet in the air and freefall at speeds of up to 120 mph.

Before you start looking for skydiving locations, it's important to note that not all places offer this service. However, there are many reputable skydiving centers across the United States that you can choose from.

One of the most popular destinations for skydiving is Skydive Perris in California. This location has been in operation for over 40 years and has highly trained instructors that will guide you through the skydiving process. It's also one of the few skydiving centers that offer tandem jumps for beginners.

If you're on the East Coast, Skydive Long Island in New York is another popular option. They offer jumps from a height of 13,500 feet, which is one of the highest jumps available in the country. They also have a video package that captures your entire skydiving experience from start to finish.

For those who want to experience the thrill of skydiving outside of the United States, Skydive Dubai should be on your list. Skydiving over the Dubai desert offers a unique and incredible view of the city. The center also offers special packages that include skydiving and sightseeing in Dubai.

Before booking your skydiving adventure, it's crucial to make sure that the center you choose adheres to all safety regulations. Although skydiving can be a risky activity, choosing a reputable location and instructor can minimize the risk.

In conclusion, skydiving should definitely be on your list of things to do before turning 21. It's an unforgettable experience that you'll remember for years to come. Whether you choose to skydive domestically or internationally, make sure to do your research and choose a trustworthy location. Happy jumping!

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Travel to a new country: Any country of choice

Source: Travel The Food For The Soul

Turning 21 is a significant milestone, the age at which we are considered adults in most countries. Before reaching this critical age, there are things that you should experience, and one of them is traveling to a new country. Traveling is not only fun and enjoyable, but it is also a learning experience that can make a lasting positive impact on your life.

Traveling to a new country before you turn 21 gives you the opportunity to broaden your horizons and discover the world from a different perspective. It's a chance to explore new cultures, meet diverse people, learn new languages, taste new foods, and create beautiful memories that will last a lifetime.

To make the most out of your travel experience, it’s essential to decide on a country to visit, research various activities, and plan your trip well in advance. Here are some reasons why traveling to a new country is important before you reach 21.

Experience a new culture

Traveling to a new country will expose you to different cultures and traditions that you might not find in your hometown. You will be able to learn new customs, taste new foods and embrace cultural diversity, which helps you to develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of different cultures around the world.

Learn new languages

Traveling to a country where they speak a different language than your native tongue can be an ideal opportunity for you to learn and improve your language skills. Being able to speak a different language can benefit you when you are trying to communicate with people from different backgrounds, both personally and professionally.

Meet new people

Traveling to a new country opens up opportunities to meet new people from diverse backgrounds that have different beliefs and worldviews. Meeting new people can help you to build a network, create lifelong friends, and develop empathy and understanding towards others.

Step out of your comfort zone

Traveling outside of your comfort zone is a great way to challenge yourself and develop more self-confidence. When you're in a new country where everything is different, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed or uncertain about what to do. This can be an excellent opportunity to push yourself out of your comfort zone and develop new skills that can help you grow as a person.

Before you turn 21, make sure you travel to a new country and take advantage of the many opportunities that this experience presents. Experiencing different cultures, learning new languages, meeting new people, and stepping out of your comfort zone will not only make you more knowledgeable and confident but also provide you with beautiful memories that you will cherish for a lifetime.


Attend a music festival: Coachella, Lollapalooza, or a local music fest

Source: NJ.com

Turning 21 is a milestone in every young adult's life but before you hit this age, there are certain things you should do and experiences you should have. One of the most exciting experiences to have before turning 21 is attending a music festival – whether it's Coachella, Lollapalooza, or a local music fest, this is an experience that will definitely stay with you for a long time.

Attending a music festival is not just about the music, it's about the experience. You get to meet new people, hang out with friends, and dance the night away to your favorite artists. It's a unique way to bond with others who share your passion for music and it's something you should definitely do before turning 21.

Coachella is one of the biggest and most popular music festivals in the world. Held annually in Indio, California, this festival attracts thousands of people from all over the world. Coachella is known for its impressive line-up of artists from various genres of music, impressive art installations, and its lively atmosphere. This is definitely a festival to attend before turning 21.

Lollapalooza is another music festival worth attending. This festival takes place in Chicago, Illinois, and is known for its diverse line-up of artists. From rock to pop, hip hop to EDM, Lollapalooza is a festival that caters to all music tastes. Attending this festival before turning 21 will give you a chance to experience performances from some of the biggest names in the music industry.

If you can't make it to Coachella or Lollapalooza, there are plenty of local music festivals that offer a similar experience. These festivals are usually held during the summer months and are a chance to discover new artists or see your favorite local bands perform.

Attending a music festival before turning 21 is an experience you don't want to miss. Make sure to plan your trip in advance, bring comfortable shoes and clothes, and be ready to dance the night away. This is a perfect opportunity to create memories that will last a lifetime.


Volunteer at a charity event: Any local charities or events

Source: Parents

Volunteering at a charity event is a great way to give back to your community, make a difference in the lives of those in need, and gain valuable life experiences. If you're looking for things to do before turning 21, volunteering at a charity event is an excellent activity to consider.

There are many local charities and events that need volunteers. From food banks to homeless shelters, hospitals to animal shelters, there are a variety of options to choose from. You can also search for events and organizations that align with your personal interests, such as environmental causes, social justice issues, or supporting youth programs.

When you volunteer at a charity event, you'll have the opportunity to meet and work with a diverse group of people who share your passion for helping others. Whether you're sorting donations, serving meals, or participating in a fundraising walk, you'll be making a tangible difference in the lives of those you're serving.

Additionally, volunteering at a charity event can help you develop valuable skills and experience. For example, you might learn how to work as part of a team, solve problems on the fly, or communicate with a wide range of people. These skills can be useful in many areas of your life, such as school, work, or personal relationships.

Volunteering at a charity event can also be a great way to deepen your sense of purpose and connection to your community. When you see firsthand the impact you're making in the lives of others, you'll feel a greater sense of satisfaction and fulfillment. Additionally, you'll be building relationships with other volunteers and with those you're serving, which can lead to a stronger sense of belonging and purpose.

Overall, volunteering at a charity event is an excellent activity to consider before turning 21. Not only will you be making a positive impact in your community, but you'll also be gaining valuable skills and experiences, and deepening your sense of purpose and connection. So why not start exploring local charities and events today? You never know what kind of meaningful experiences are waiting for you.


Learn to surf: Hawaii, California, or any surfable location

Source: Lapoint - Surf camps

As you approach the age of 21, you may start feeling a sense of urgency about all the things you haven't done yet - and learning to surf should definitely be on your list. Why? Because not only is surfing an exhilarating way to experience the ocean, it's also a great way to stay in shape and boost your confidence. Here are some tips for mastering this incredible sport before turning 21.

First, decide where you want to learn. While Hawaii and California are some of the most famous surf destinations in the world, there are many other places you could travel to, depending on your budget and interests. Places like Bali, Costa Rica, and Australia are also popular choices for surf camps and lessons.

Once you've chosen your destination, find a reputable surf school or instructor. Learning to surf on your own can be dangerous and frustrating, so it's important to have someone who can guide you through the ropes. Look for schools that have a good track record of safety and success, and read reviews from previous students.

Next, invest in the right equipment. You'll need a surfboard and a wetsuit, which you can usually rent from the surf school. You don't need to buy your own gear until you're sure you want to pursue surfing long-term. Make sure your wetsuit fits properly, and bring sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun.

When you hit the beach, listen closely to your instructor's guidance. They'll teach you the basics of paddling, standing up, and riding the waves. It may take some time to get the hang of it, but don't get discouraged - surfing is a skill that takes practice and patience.

As you start to feel more comfortable on your board, challenge yourself by trying different types of waves and maneuvers. Learning to surf can be a lifelong journey, so don't expect to become a pro overnight. But with dedication and practice, you'll soon be riding the waves like a pro.

In conclusion, learning to surf is an incredible way to challenge yourself and experience the beauty of the ocean. Whether you choose to learn in Hawaii, California, or another surfable location, make sure you have a good instructor, proper equipment, and a positive attitude. And who knows - maybe surfing will become a lifelong passion that you continue to enjoy long after turning 21.


Take a road trip: Any route and location of choice

Source: YouWorkForThem

As an individual about to turn 21, it's an exciting time in your life with many opportunities and experiences ahead. One item to consider adding to your pre-21 bucket list is taking a road trip. It's a chance to explore new places, try new foods, and create memories that will last a lifetime. Here are some tips to help make your road trip a success.

  • Plan your route: Depending on the length of your trip, you'll need to decide which states and cities you'll be passing through. Consider what type of scenery you want to see and take into account any must-see attractions along the way.
  • Choose your mode of transportation: Some prefer driving their own vehicle, while others prefer renting one for the trip. Whatever you choose, make sure it's reliable and has enough space for your luggage and any souvenirs you may purchase.
  • Research accommodations: Before you hit the road, make sure you have hotels or Airbnb accommodations booked along your route. This will ensure that you have a place to rest each night and won't be left stranded in an unfamiliar place.
  • Create a budget: Road trips can quickly add up, so it's crucial to set a budget for food, gas, lodging, and any entertainment or activities you plan to participate in along the way.
  • Pack smart: Make sure to pack everything you need for the trip, including snacks, water, and any clothing or equipment specific to your planned activities.
  • Take pictures and document your trip: A road trip is a chance to capture unique and personal memories. Take plenty of photos, keep a journal, or even start a blog to share your experiences with others.

Remember, the purpose of a road trip is to have fun and experience something new. Keep an open mind, be flexible, and allow time to explore unplanned opportunities along the way. A road trip is a chance to make memories that will stick with you for the rest of your life, so make the most of it!


Attend a Broadway show: New York City

Source: Wikipedia

There are so many fun and exciting things to do before the age of 21, and one of those things is attending a Broadway show in the bustling city of New York. There is no better way to experience the magic of live theater than on Broadway, and here's why:

  • Broaden your horizons: Attending a Broadway show is an excellent opportunity to broaden your cultural horizons. The diverse shows in New York City provide an array of performances covering a vast range of topics from serious dramas to lighthearted musicals.
  • Witness talent: New York is home to some of the world's most talented actors, singers, dancers, and other performers. Seeing them on stage performing at their best is an awe-inspiring experience that will leave you feeling amazed and inspired.
  • Witness history: Broadway has been the sky-reaching home of live theater since it came into existence. The mere exposure to the ambiance of it is indescribable. Walking down the main street of Broadway will make you feel the gravity of living history, as the best shows and the most talented actors have graced the very same pavement.
  • State of the Art technical elements: Attending a Broadway show also means witnessing the latest advancements in theater technology. From the lighting to the sound, everything is at the height of innovation to bring you the ultimate experience.
  • Create memories: Attending a Broadway show is an experience you are likely never to forget. The ambiance, the characters, the story, everything about the show makes an impression that stays with you for a long time after the curtain closes. You'll have memories that you will cherish for a lifetime.

All in all, attending a Broadway show is a wonderful experience and one that everyone should have at least once before the age of 21. With the plethora of choices and variety of shows, you are sure to find something that suits your interests. So, put on those fancy dresses or sharp suits and make your way into the dazzling lights of Broadway!


Go to a professional sports game: Local or national team

Source: Wikipedia

As you approach the age of 21, there are many things you might want to experience before your teenage years are officially over. Going to a professional sports game could be one of those experiences you don’t want to miss out on. Whether you’re a sports enthusiast or not, watching a live game is an exciting and memorable event that you won't forget anytime soon.

Attending a professional sports game can be an incredible experience, especially if you’re a big fan of the sport or the particular team you’re watching plays. If you’re a sports fan, then watching the game live could be a dream come true. You can feel the energy and excitement that comes from thousands of people cheering and rooting for their favorite teams. It's an atmosphere that's impossible to replicate at home; it's the combination of the sounds, smells, sights, and your fellow spectators' passion and energy that creates an unforgettable experience.

Not only is attending a professional sports game entertaining, it can also be an educational experience. If you’re not knowledgeable about the sport, attending a live game can help you understand it better. For example, when you watch a football game live, you can see how much strategy goes into each play, how the players are positioned on the field, and how they all work together to score points. Seeing the game in this perspective can help you gain a new appreciation for the sport.

If you’re intimidated by the price of professional sports tickets, it’s important to know that there are often cheaper options available. Many stadiums have “nosebleed” sections that offer more affordable tickets, or you could even try watching a local team instead of a national one. You will still get a great experience without breaking the bank.

In conclusion, attending a professional sports game is a great way to create long-lasting memories and have fun with your friends before you turn 21. Whether you’re a sports enthusiast or not, give it a try and see for yourself how exciting it can be. With budget options and a plethora of sports to choose from, there’s something for everyone. Take the leap and immerse yourself in the world of sports - you won't regret it.

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Try a new extreme sport: Bungee jumping, zip-lining, or rock climbing

Source: Wikipedia

Turning 21 is often seen as a milestone in life, as it marks the legal age for drinking in the United States. While celebrating with a drink may be on your mind, there are many other things you can do before hitting that age marker. One of those things is trying a new extreme sport such as bungee jumping, zip-lining, or rock climbing. Here’s why and how to make it happen.

First, participating in an extreme sport can give you a huge adrenaline rush and a sense of accomplishment. When you push yourself to do something that scares you, you often come out on the other side feeling more confident and alive. Plus, extreme sports can be a lot of fun and provide great stories to tell.

One option for an extreme sport is bungee jumping. This activity involves jumping off a tall structure such as a bridge while attached to a bungee cord. The jump is typically around 100-200 feet and lasts about five seconds. While it may seem scary, bungee jumping is actually a very safe activity when done with a reputable company. It’s important to do your research and choose a company with a good safety record.

Another option is zip-lining. This activity involves gliding down a cable while attached to a harness. You can find zip-lining courses all over the world, from forests to city centers. Zip-lining is a great option if you want to experience an adrenaline rush without the intensity of bungee jumping or rock climbing.

Lastly, rock climbing is a great way to challenge yourself physically and mentally. There are both indoor and outdoor options, and many climbing gyms offer classes for beginners. Rock climbing requires strength, agility, and problem-solving skills as you figure out how to reach the top of the climbing wall or rock face.

If you’re interested in trying an extreme sport before turning 21, start by researching companies or locations in your area that offer these activities. Choose a reputable company that prioritizes safety and has good reviews. You’ll also want to make sure you’re physically ready for the activity. Extreme sports require a certain level of fitness and mobility, so be sure to weigh any medical concerns before booking a trip.

In conclusion, trying an extreme sport such as bungee jumping, zip-lining, or rock climbing can be an exciting and rewarding experience before turning 21. It’s important to prioritize safety and research reputable companies or locations before booking your adventure. So, get out there and challenge yourself – you may be surprised at what you can accomplish!


Attend Mardi Gras: New Orleans

Source: 64 Parishes

As the saying goes, “You’re only young once.” That’s why it’s important to make the most of your youth and create memories that will last a lifetime. If you’re looking for an unforgettable experience before you turn 21, then attending Mardi Gras in New Orleans should definitely be on your bucket list.

Mardi Gras is an annual celebration that takes place in New Orleans, Louisiana, and it’s known for its elaborate parades, colorful costumes, and lively parties. The festival usually starts in late February or early March and lasts for several days leading up to Fat Tuesday, which is the day before the start of Lent.

Attending Mardi Gras before you turn 21 can be an incredibly fun and exciting experience. You’ll get to partake in a celebration that has been going on for over 300 years, and witness firsthand the customs and traditions that make it such a unique event.

One of the best things about Mardi Gras is the parades. The parades are filled with floats, marching bands, beads, and other colorful trinkets. Each parade has a different theme, and the floats are often decorated to reflect that theme. You’ll be amazed by the creativity and artistry that goes into each float.

Another fun aspect of Mardi Gras is the chance to dress up in costume. It’s a tradition for people to wear masks and costumes during the festival, so you’ll fit right in if you decide to dress up. This is a great opportunity to be creative and express yourself however you want.

Aside from attending the parades and dressing up, there are plenty of other things to do during Mardi Gras. You can try some of the local cuisine, which includes dishes like gumbo, jambalaya, and crawfish. You can also attend one of the many parties that take place throughout the city, including the famous Bacchus Ball.

But perhaps the best thing about attending Mardi Gras before you turn 21 is the sense of freedom and liberation that comes with it. The festival is all about letting loose and having fun, and there’s no better way to do that than by celebrating with thousands of other people who are doing the same.

In conclusion, attending Mardi Gras in New Orleans before you turn 21 is an experience that you won’t want to miss. It’s a chance to immerse yourself in a rich cultural tradition, have fun with friends, and create unforgettable memories. So why not add it to your list of things to do before 21?

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Start a solo adventure: Backpacking or hiking trip

Source: Bearfoot Theory

Reaching 21 is an important milestone in everyone's life, but before reaching that age, there are a lot of things that you can do to make your young age memorable. One of the best things that you can do is to start a solo adventure, which includes a backpacking or hiking trip. Not only is it an exciting and challenging way to explore new places, but it is also a great way to learn new things about yourself and the world around you. In this article, we will guide you through some tips on how to plan and execute a successful backpacking or hiking trip before you turn 21.

Firstly, it's very important to do your research before embarking on any backpacking or hiking trip. Make sure to research the area you plan to visit, the weather conditions, and any equipment that you may need. This is especially important if you are traveling to a different country or state. You don't want to be caught off guard and unprepared for the conditions you may encounter.

Once you've done your research, the next step is to plan your route. Decide on the trail or routes you want to take and map out your itinerary. It's a good idea to have a backup plan in case of an emergency or unexpected weather conditions. You should also record your plan with a family member or friend so that someone knows where you are and when you plan to return.

When it comes to equipment, you don't need to spend a lot of money to get the necessary gear. You can borrow or rent equipment from friends or outdoor retailers. The critical pieces of equipment which you will need include a sturdy backpack, trekking poles, a tent or shelter, a sleeping bag, proper hiking boots, and clothing suitable for the weather condition.

As with any outdoor adventure, it's essential always to be prepared with water and food. Ensure that you have enough food and water to last you throughout the entire journey. You can carry a water filter or water purification tablets to prevent illnesses caused by drinking contaminated water.

Before embarking on your backpacking or hiking trip, ensure to inform someone about your destination, route, and timeline. Always let a family member or friend know where you are going and who you will be going with as this is important for your safety.

In conclusion, starting a solo adventure by backpacking or hiking before you reach 21 is an excellent way to explore new places, gain confidence in yourself and learn new skills. Ensure that you do your research, plan your route, and have the necessary equipment and supplies. With these tips, you will be well on your way to an unforgettable adventure on the trail.


Source: TripAdvisor

If you are looking for things to do before you turn 21, one option that should definitely be on your list is to join an organized party crawl in Las Vegas or any other popular party destination. Whether you are traveling alone or with friends, this is an experience that you won't want to miss out on.

Organized party crawls are designed to give you an unforgettable night out on the town. These crawls typically include visits to several different bars, nightclubs and other entertainment venues in the city, all while being led by knowledgeable and experienced party guides. Some even offer exclusive perks such as free drinks, no cover charge at the venues, and priority entry.

Las Vegas is a particularly popular destination for party crawls. Known as the "Entertainment Capital of the World", Las Vegas is renowned for its vibrant and lively nightlife scene. The city is home to some of the most iconic clubs and casinos in the world, with top DJs, celebrity sightings and endless entertainment options.

To make the most of your experience in Las Vegas, consider booking a guided party crawl. There are many reputable companies that offer party crawls in the city, such as the Las Vegas Club Crawl. These guided tours will take you to the hottest venues in the city, where you can party with like-minded travelers and locals alike.

Of course, Las Vegas isn't the only place to experience a party crawl. Other popular destinations include cities like Miami, New York, Los Angeles, and many more. No matter where you choose to go, you're sure to have a great time and make unforgettable memories.

Joining an organized party crawl is not only a fun and exciting way to celebrate your youth, but it's also a fantastic way to meet new people and experience a new city in a unique and unforgettable way. So, before you turn 21, be sure to add this to your list of things to do - You won't regret it!

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Frequently asked questions

Some important things to do before turning 21 include getting a driver's license, exploring career interests, saving money, and traveling.

While having a solid career plan before turning 21 is not necessary, it's important to explore different career interests and gain experience through internships, volunteering, or part-time jobs to help make informed career decisions in the future.

Yes, building credit is important as it affects your ability to get approved for loans, credit cards, and even rental applications. Building good credit habits early on, such as making payments on time and using credit responsibly, can help set you up for financial success in the future.

Some fun experiences to have before turning 21 may include traveling to new places, trying new hobbies or activities, attending concerts or music festivals, and taking risks such as skydiving or bungee jumping. It's important to have fun and make memories, but also to prioritize safety and responsible decision-making.

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Sanaa Frost

I love your list of things to do before turning 21! It's such an exciting time in life, and it's important to make the most of it. I completely agree with your suggestion to try living on your own. It's such a freeing experience and teaches you so much about responsibility. I also think it's important to focus on self-discovery and personal growth before turning 21. Whether that means exploring different hobbies or taking time to reflect on your values and goals, it's all part of finding yourself. Lastly, I couldn't agree more with your suggestion to travel. Experiencing different cultures and places opens up your mind and helps you develop a broader perspective on life. Great list!

Carlo Leonard

Hey there! I completely agree with your list of things to do before 21. As someone who just turned 21, I can say that these experiences really do help you grow and shape who you are. Traveling alone is such a valuable experience that allows you to discover yourself and gain independence. I also think it's important to take risks and try new things, whether it's going skydiving or starting your own business. These experiences teach you so much and help you become more confident in yourself. Overall, I think your list is spot-on and I encourage everyone to take advantage of these opportunities before turning 21.
Thank you so much for your kind words! I'm thrilled to hear that you agree with my list of things to do before turning 21. It's incredible to hear that you recently celebrated your 21st birthday and have experienced the growth and impact these experiences can have on you. Traveling alone truly allows you to discover yourself and gain independence - it's such a valuable experience that I highly recommend. Taking risks and trying new things, like skydiving or starting a business, can be transformative and build confidence in yourself. I'm glad you found my list to be spot-on, and I absolutely encourage everyone to make the most of these opportunities before they turn 21.

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