As a travel nurse, you have the rare opportunity to see the U.S. while getting paid. Many nurses choose to take advantage of this by submitting to travel assignments near America’s natural gems—National Parks. Health Carousel Travel Nursing works with hospitals, and healthcare and public health systems near many of these natural wonders, and can find the perfect assignment to satisfy the outdoor adventurer in you.
Top National Park Destinations for Travel Nurses
Ever dreamt of being a “national park nurse?” Here are five destinations you should consider for your next travel nursing job, all of which are near a U.S. National Park or national park service.
1. FRESNO, CALIFORNIA, NEAR YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK
Yosemite National Park is the spot where internationally-renowned photographer Ansel Adams spent much of his life, capturing its striking beauty that you’ve probably seen many times in black-and-white. A Fresno travel nursing job means you’ll be just 62 miles south of the National Park, making Yosemite an easy day or overnight trip. Experience everything from Yosemite Valley with its famous sights like Half Dome, Bridal Veil, and Yosemite Falls, to the unspoiled backcountry of the High Sierra, along with abundant wildlife that includes black bears, coyotes, mountain lions, and mule deer. With so much to see and do, including endless scenic trails for hiking, you’ll probably want to visit more than once. Just make sure you plan accordingly and before the park’s closing date, as it closes for the winter months.
2. GREATER SEATTLE AREA NEAR OLYMPIC NATIONAL PARK AND MT. RAINIER NATIONAL PARK
Two fantastic national parks are within easy reach of the Greater Seattle Area. Olympic National Park is just two hours west of Washington’s largest city. Once there, you can enjoy hiking underneath a lush canopy of rainforest on trails that lead to waterfalls, hot springs, and beautiful Lake Crescent. You can also stroll on wild, driftwood-strewn beaches along the Pacific Coast.
Mount Rainier National Park, about an hour and 40-minute drive south of Seattle, is home to the iconic mountain that soars more than 14,400 feet above the city. You’ll find something to do here year-round, including skiing and boarding at the Crystal Mountain ski resort. In the summer, hike trails that wind through alpine meadows dotted with colorful wildflowers. Tipsoo Lake offers one of the best views of the mountain itself, with its reflection captured in the often still, translucent waters.
3. GREATER CLEVELAND AREA NEAR CUYHOGA VALLEY NATIONAL PARK
Just 20 miles south of Cleveland is Cuyahoga Valley National Park. You’ll want to spend a couple of days here or return for a second trip to enjoy its many highlights, including the thundering 65-foot waterfall known as Brandywine Falls and 15-foot Blue Hen Falls, surrounded by leafy forest for postcard-perfect photos. Visit the Beaver Marsh to not only spot beavers, but other animals like turtles, blue herons, and eagles along with the occasional otter. Hop on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad for an unforgettable journey along a 3.5-hour loop that travels through the park. While many nurses don’t think “U.S. National Park opportunity” when considering Cleveland travel RN jobs, Cuyahoga actually provides an unforgettable experience for those who visit.
4. PHOENIX AND PRESCOTT, ARIZONA, NEAR GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK
There are many cities in which to take an Arizona travel nurse assignment and visit Grand Canyon National Park. America’s most-visited national park is 3.5 hours from Phoenix and is a little over two hours from Prescott. Once there, you’ll be able to gaze upon this formidable 227-mile-long canyon, up to 18-mile-wide and one-mile-deep with walls featuring a striking mosaic of colors that become even more impressive at sunrise and sunset. After the sun goes down, the dark skies are ideal for stargazing.
5. RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, NEAR SHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARK
Just 90 minutes from your Richmond travel nursing job, you’ll be able to enjoy 500 miles of hiking trails and one of the country’s most stunning scenic byways in Shenandoah National Park. The 105-mille Skyline Drive boasts incredible views of the Blue Ridge Mountains in every season; summer is stunning with endless blue-green forests as far as the eye can see, while autumn means vibrant foliage blanketed across the landscape. In winter, it’s a magical snowy wonderland, and in spring, the area is bursting with color once again as the flowers bloom. If you decide to travel in the winter, check the park’s closing date and time. Sometimes the roads or park may be closed due to weather conditions.
Perks of Being a Travel Nurse
There are several perks of being a travel nurse besides having the ability to work near a national park service. Many registered nurses choose to become travel nurses because they get to travel the country. You also have the opportunity to feel comfortable working with and caring for a variety of patient populations. Travel nurses usually make higher wages than staff registered nurses and aren’t as involved in hospital politics. In addition, you have the opportunity to learn new skills, meet new people, and expand your professional network. It’s rewarding and exciting.
If you’re ready to book your once-in-a-lifetime experience near a U.S. National Park, contact a travel nursing recruiter at Health Carousel Travel Nursing today. Our recruiters work with you and can answer any travel nursing questions you have.