It’s almost Labor Day and with it marks the unofficial end of summer (though it may not feel like it in some parts of the country). The colder months will soon be upon us and with that comes new “hot” travel destinations for fall.
In the fall, most kids have gone back to school so many popular travel locations are now offering lower prices and have fewer crowds that you’d find in the summer months. We’ve pulled together our five best travel locations for the fall and winter, and why they’re also great for nurses!
As the largest state in the country, the Lone Star State is home to a number of great cities to explore. One of the most popular with travel nurses recently has been Austin.
Known as the “Live Music Capital of the World”, Austin has always been a hub for music and entertainment. Growing quickly the past few years, Austin is a great city to explore for those interested in live music and great local food scene (BBQ anyone?). From Austin, you can also easily take a day trip over to San Antonio or Houston to explore more of the Lone Star State.
For travel nurses, Texas has an average increased rate of 2.8% in terms of annual salary, making it a great stop for travelers. There is also a projected shortage of almost 16,000 nurses by 2030 in Texas, making the demand for nurses high.
Home to part of the Rocky Mountains, and more famously, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming is a great place to spend the colder months. Yellowstone is best known for it’s volatile geysers but with the park spanning nearly 3,500 square miles, there are many beautiful forests, canyons and waterfalls to also explore.
About an hour away from Yellowstone is the valley of Jackson Hole. Particularly in the later months, Jackson is known for its growing ski community and resorts. But if you aren’t in the area during ski season, Jackson is also full of hiking trails and wildlife that are equally worth appreciating.
For travel nurses, Wyoming has seen an increase in salary of 3% from 2016 to 2017 – a high trend compared to most states in the country. There is also a great need for nurses in Wyoming as it’s mainly a rural state that struggles to recruit full-time nurses. By taking an assignment in Wyoming, you can help treat communities experiencing shortages while also exploring the beauty of the western States.
#3 North Carolina
The Tar Heel State has the best of both worlds. With the mountains on one end, the coast on the other, and an eight hour drive in between, you could easily visit both from any place in NC.
On the mountain side of the state, Asheville is a beautiful town with a deep bluegrass culture and vibrant arts scene. You can also visit the Biltmore Estate, the largest privately owned house in the State, with its historic architecture and beautiful gardens.
On the other side of the state is the Outer Banks which is steeped in history from the Wright brothers, to the pirate Blackbeard, and the mystery of the Lost Colony. The outer banks also offers place for fishing, windsurfing, and spending time on the beach.
For travel nurses, North Carolina also has a wide range of great facilities to choose from. Just a few include Duke, Wake Forest Medical, and UNC-Chapel Hill. Though there are so many facilities, NC is still project to have a deficit of nearly 13,000 nurses by 2025. Of the 80 rural counties in the state, 70 are also designated “medical deserts” due to the lack of primary care. Traveling in NC can help to provide care to these areas that are greatest in need.
#2 Grand Canyon
One of America’s greatest natural wonders, the Grand Canyon is definitely a sight worth seeing if you have the opportunity. Located in northern Arizona, it’s a great location to visit if you’re taking an assignment in Arizona or even southern Utah.
September through November are actually some of the best months to visit the Canyon as daytime temperatures are cooler, making it a great place for hiking, camping and exploration. The Canyon is also located to a number of other great landmarks including Antelope Canyon and Bryce Canyon if you have more time.
For travel nurses, Arizona is a great location to help out as they have a growing need. The state is predicted to have a shortage of 50,000 by 2030. To further incentivise nurses, the state also has a great trend of increasing salaries. Average salaries increased 2.3% from 2016 to 2017 and will likely continue to rise because of the shortage.
The list of places to visit in California is endless. The Golden State is the third largest state in the country and offers locations to cling onto those last few days of summer as the temperatures drop. Some of the best locations to visit are:
- San Francisco: This northern California city is home to the Golden Gate Bridge and boasts an edgy art scene, combined with imaginative cuisine and many opportunities for adventure.
- San Diego: Down in southern California, explore the coastline where the beaches are vast and nightlife is thriving.
- Los Angeles: The City of Angels is unique in the variety of neighborhoods they have to explore. Spend some time in Hollywood, explore their variety of art galleries, or spend a day in Disneyland!
- Big Sur: One of the lesser known travel destinations in California, Big Sur is situated right under San Jose and provides beautiful view of the coastline and a number of state parks to explore.
- Napa Valley: When in California, may as well sample the local wineries! With 400+ wineries and locations for golfing and dining, this is a great stop for relaxation.
For travel nurses, California is also a great location because it has the highest average salary in the country with an average 2017 salary of $102,689. Though California also has one of the highest costs of living, that makes it a great travel destination for a short temporary assignment. This way you can explore the state without committing to a longer stay (unless you love it there!).
As you start thinking about fall and winter travel assignments for the year, we hope this list has helped you brainstorm some locations you’d love to travel to! If you’re ready to start your search for your next assignment, click here to search all travel nursing jobs on Nomad.
The Nomad Team