By Sarah Wengert
It’s a beautiful year to explore some amazing new locations, travelers. And when it comes to spots for your next travel nursing assignment, the cool thing is that every traveler is looking for something different — so, that means great-fitting jobs for everybody! Or, as Amy Poehler says, “There’s a lid for every pot.” When it comes to travel nurse assignments, there tend to be locations so popular that they’re nearly universal and always sought after, those simply in high current demand, and then those hidden gem locations that only the savviest travelers will discover.
For your consideration, here are our top 20 travel nurse destinations for 2022!
1. Anchorage, AK
Travel nursing assignments in Anchorage offer great adventure, with Alaska’s unique location, culture, and otherworldly natural beauty. As the state’s largest city, Anchorage offers a neat blend of both wild and urban places to experience. Here you can explore trails; peep wildlife like moose, bears, and whales; see (and hear!) glaciers; and tons more in the wild. On the urban tip, explore indigenous culture at the Alaska Native Heritage Center, or shop for Native crafts and art, fresh seafood, or other wares. Bonus: Shopping in Anchorage is tax-free! And yes, it gets cold here. But bundle up and you just might see the northern lights or midnight sun, go dogsledding, take a day cruise, kayak with expansive views of unspoiled nature, and so much more. It’s a really fun place to spend 13 weeks while building your career in care! Barrow, Juneau, Ketchikan, and Soldotna are a few other cool cities for Alaska assignments.
2. Jacksonville, Florida
On the other hand, this hotspot in northern Florida is the largest city in the Sunshine State and a heavenly place for your next travel healthcare job. From downtown high rises to the largest urban park system in the nation, JAX (as the locals call it) has something for everyone to enjoy. Originally dubbed “The River City by the Sea,” the presence of St. Johns River and the Atlantic Ocean make JAX a water-lover’s dream indeed. Think sun, sand, boating, fishing, and diving — plus arts and culture, a lively music and nightlife scene, foodie-approved dining, fun riverwalks, and tons more. Also, the cost of living is solid in this city so blessed by beaches! Explore Jacksonville travel nursing assignments and see if this sunny hotspot is the right fit for you.
3. Falls Church, Virginia
This charming town of approximately 15,000 offers travelers a little bit of everything. It may be small but it’s just a 25-minute drive to everything Washington, D.C. has to explore — including some of the nation’s top tourist sites, museums, and more. However, this quaint, historic town has plenty to explore all its own too, like classic Victorian architecture, arts and entertainment, great dining and shopping, parks and hiking, Great Falls and the Potomac River, and so much more. Enjoy access to the big city but only when you want to venture in, and spend the rest of your assignment in this adorable enclave! Explore Falls Church travel nurse jobs and see if this is the Goldilocks spot for you.
4. Phoenix, Arizona
The larger Phoenix area is a conglomeration of suburbs and cities, so this entry comes with all kinds of bonus location options and tons to do and see. Phoenix travel nursing jobs are a great choice this year for travelers who want to escape colder weather, explore the Southwestern U.S., golfers, hikers, nature lovers, art lovers, and others. Nearby Chandler is also a popular spot for an Arizona travel healthcare assignment. Not in the mood for a major metro area but still feeling a location in the Southwest? Check out Show Low, Arizona.
5. Tacoma, Washington
With a location just south of supersonic Seattle, many travelers will choose a healthcare travel job in Tacoma this year. Just like its famous neighbor to the north, Tacoma has great art (its known in particular for glass art), creative culture, and it sits on the Puget Sound. But it all comes with a lower cost of living — which can go a long way for travelers’ take-home compensation! This is a true hidden gem and a great spot for a travel assignment. Nearby Gig Harbor, Washington (just 20 minutes away) is also a prime location. On your days off you can explore everything the Evergreen State has to offer — from the Seattle city scene to the natural beauty of its many mountain peaks and forests.
6. Atlanta, Georgia
Georgia should definitely be on your mind when it comes to your travel nurse career. With its consistently available jobs and chock-full of Southern charm attitude, most travelers find Atlanta travel nurse assignments to be just as sweet as a peach! This capital city has many exciting features like pro sports teams, amazing dining, shopping, history, and so much more to explore on your days off. Check out the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site, Georgia Aquarium, Centennial Olympic Park, the Fox Theatre, Stone Mountain, World of Coca-Cola, and Piedmont Park to start.
7. Honolulu, Hawaii
A travel nursing assignment in the Aloha State is a dream for many, many travelers for obvious reasons. Make your own dreams come true with a travel nurse job in Honolulu! There’s probably no need for us to explain in depth why Hawaii is on this list of popular travel assignments for the year. But just to nutshell it for anyone who doesn’t know, this city and its surrounding area are known for surfing, beaches, lovely tropical climate, Pearl Harbor, lush flora, volcanoes, rich Polynesian culture, nightlife, and tons more. It’s basically paradise, OK? Hilo, Waimea, and Kealakekua are a few other great cities for Hawaii travel jobs.
8. Morgantown, West Virginia
Morgantown is a cool little city (population just over 30,000) in north-central West Virginia, not far from the Pennsylvania and Ohio borders. The city sits along the Monongahela River and is known for its arts culture, mountaineer history, great people, and a strong food and drink scene. It’s a a college town — the Art Museum of WVU, Mountaineer Field, and WVU Core Arboretum are each big draws for those who take travel nurse jobs in Morgantown. And also, a nature town — explore Cheat Lake, Coopers Rock State Forest, WV Botanic Garden. About 150 miles east is Martinsburg, another great travel nursing location to consider in West Virginia.
9. Santa Cruz, California
Sun, sand, surf. If these are a few of your favorite things, talk to your recruiter about a travel nursing job in Santa Cruz. A lot of people come visit this charming seaside destination, but it’s a real treat to spend 13 weeks (or more!) really exploring and taking it all in as a traveler. There’s so much to do and see here, let’s do a quick roll call: the famous Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk (complete with rides, entertainment, dining, and attractions), lots of great beaches like Main Beach and Cowell Beach, the Santa Cruz Wharf, whale and dolphin watching in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, great surfing and a surfing museum, quaint Downtown Santa Cruz, historic Santa Cruz Mission, Mystery Spot, incredible hiking and views, and all just a quick drive to the famous Highway One route along Monterey Bay. The San Francisco/Oakland area, just about an hour-and-a-half north, is another great area for travel jobs — or day trips!
10. Redding, California
California’s so huge and full of hidden gems that we’re giving The Golden State two spots on the list. Nature lovers will absolutely adore Redding, Northern California’s largest city north of Sacramento with a population of 91,000+. Redding sits at the Sacramento Valley’s north end; just an hour south of Mount Shasta. The natural beauty is stunning and plentiful when you take a Redding travel nursing assignment, but the cost of living is low! In fact, Redding is known for the fact that hundreds of miles of State and National Parks and Forests are within just a 30-mile radius of town. Must-sees include Sundial Bridge, Lassen Volcanic National Park, Lake Shasta, and many, many more. Redding is nicknamed the “Gem of the U.S. Trails System” and the “Trails Capital of California.” We weren’t kidding when we said this place was a gem!
11. Lewes, Delaware
This hidden gem sits right where the Delaware Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean in the state’s beautiful Cape Region. Lewes is a petite, picturesque town and it’s perfect for travelers who love the sea, sand, and sun! The town’s also got a walkable historic district with cute shops, restaurants, museums, and more. And despite its small-town quaintness, the medical facilities in Lewes are really great. The town’s known for its great cost of living and the state’s well known for being a tax-friendly place — always a plus for travelers. There’s a biking/hiking trail to Rehoboth Beach, which is a mere six miles away, plus Lewes is adjacent to Cape Henlopen State Park, which boast lots of beautiful beach and more. Ready to for a travel nursing job in Lewes?
12. Terre Haute, Indiana
Located in west-central Indiana, just 5 miles east of the Illinois border, this city of 60,000 sits along the Wabash River and is known as “The Queen City of the Wabash.” Terre Haute is family friendly and known as an educational hub. Culture, art, architecture, football, dining, outdoor activities and more beckon when you take a travel nurse assignment in Terre Haute. Plus, the cost of living here is well below average, allowing travelers to really make their compensation stretch. Terre Haute is also just about an hour’s drive each to Bloomington and Indianapolis, and about a 3-hour trip to Chicago. So, it’s a great home base for regional trips!
13. White Plains, New York
White Plains is just northeast of New York City near the Connecticut border. This outer suburb of The Big Apple is known for top-notch shopping and dining, and also for great schools, culture, and healthcare facilities. Sounds like the perfect spot for a traveler who may want to explore NYC but doesn’t care to live in the city that never sleeps. When you take a travel nursing job in White Plains you can access all of New York City’s culture, dining, theater, sightseeing, and more after just a quick half-hour train ride down. Also, White Plains has some pretty great stuff to explore itself, like the White Plains Performing Arts Center, Saxon Woods Park, Battle of White Plains Park, Percy Grainger Home, Westchester Mall, White Plains Farmers Market, and more. Daring travelers may also enjoy a helicopter tour of the NYC metro area!
14. Omaha, Nebraska
Take a travel nursing job in Omaha and you’ll see why more folks should stop and stay awhile in “flyover country.” This mid-sized city sits on the eastern edge of Nebraska with a population around 475,000 and metro area population nearing one million. The state’s most populous city, Omaha’s full of friendly faces, sees all four seasons, and has plenty to do on your days off. The historic Old Market, Dundee, Blackstone, and Benson are hip neighborhoods to explore for a night out and some foodie fun. The famous Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium is a must-see. Sports fans can take in a Creighton Bluejays basketball game or make the 45-minute drive to Lincoln during football season to join the famous Nebraska Cornhuskers “sea of red.” Plant one foot in Nebraska and one in Iowa on the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge. Admire art deco architecture at Joslyn Art Museum and Durham Museum. Hike Fontenelle Forest and Lauritzen Park. Omaha’s big enough to have great dining, shopping, art, music, museums, and theater, but also petite enough to have a slower pace than major cities.
15. San Antonio, Texas
San Antonio may be known for The Alamo, but that’s not all you’ll remember from your time in this cool city! In addition to warmer temps, travel nursing jobs in San Antonio come with lots of opportunity for historic sightseeing, shopping, dining, golfing, caving, day trips, and more. The must-dos are many here, but for sure you’ll want to see the Alamo, famous San Antonio River Walk, Missions National Historical Park, the Pearl District, and Market Square and El Mercado. You can also take culinary classes at the Culinary Institute of America, and, day trippers will love jaunts to New Braunfels (a charming small town with a country music legacy) and Bandera (Cowboy Capital of the World).
16. Kansas City, Missouri
If you like BBQ, jazz, shopping, pro sports, and fine arts, then consider KC. This urban Midwest mecca sees all four seasons and has much to explore year-round. Here you can root for the Royals and cheer on the Chiefs, stroll Nelson-Atkins Art Museum and Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, sample world-class BBQ and Beard-nominated fine dining, explore the American Jazz Museum and tap your toes at local jazz clubs, have a blast at Worlds of Fun and a make a splash at Oceans of Fun — and tons more. Explore KC travel nursing jobs to find your perfect fit. Prefer to head a bit further south in The Show-Me State? Osage Beach is another great location that allows you to explore the Lake of the Ozarks!
17. Roseburg, Oregon
This gem in southeast Oregon has a population of about 25,000 and is known for its cool culture and stunning natural beauty. Roseburg sits in the heart of the beautiful Umpqua Valley. Its charming, walkable, historic downtown is known for unique shopping, restaurants, and galleries. On the outdoors tip, you can’t skip a stone around here without hitting an epic trail, waterfall, or forest. That means great rafting, hiking, fly fishing, mountain biking, and scenic views. If you’re thirsty after all of that fun in the great outdoors, luckily for you this is also the land of historic, award-winning wineries and craft breweries galore. Cheers to you, because Roseburg travel nursing jobs are a great choice! Klamath Falls, about three hours southeast of Roseburg, and known as the gateway to Crater Lake National Park, is another great location for travelers in Oregon.
18. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Travel healthcare jobs in Myrtle Beach come with the city’s famous 60-mile stretch of sandy beaches and boardwalks (part of the Grand Strand along the South Carolina coast), attractions, entertainment, golf, dining, and shopping galore! Broadway on the Beach is a bustling, touristy entertainment complex that’s a must-do for many. But from Vegas-style shows to more traditional theater to fine art offerings, there’s a bit of something for all tastes here in Myrtle Beach. The seafood, of course, is fantastic here, but you’ll find a full menu of foodie faves as well — from fine-dining sit-downs, to boardwalk grab-and-gos, to fresh ingredients you can whip up in your own kitchen. In addition to the beautiful beaches, nature stuns everywhere in Myrtle Beach. Duck the beach crowds for some me time at Myrtle Beach State Park, Huntington Beach State Park, Brookgreen Gardens, Conway Riverwalk, and Murrells Inlet MarshWalk. Also, whether you prefer golf or mini-golf, Myrtle Beach is a wonderful place to tee up on your day off.
19. Aurora, Colorado
If you love the mountains and city life, a travel nursing assignment in Aurora is a great fit for you. Aurora is Colorado’s third largest city and it’s only about a half-hour drive from downtown Denver, so you’ll have access to all the world-class dining, art, sports, shopping, culture, events, and attractions that the larger Aurora/Denver metro area has to offer. But, the great thing about this location is that even though you’re surrounded by all the benefits of urban living, you’re never too far away from a serene mountain getaway here! So, you can add hiking, skiing, rafting, kayaking, paddleboarding, golfing, fishing, and so much more to your to do list when you work a travel job in Aurora. This is a fantastic location for nearly any traveler — the mountain air and majestic views of colorful Colorado will do wonders for your mental and physical health!
20. Augusta, Maine
This quaint New England town of about 20,000 sits right on the Kennebec River. Augusta is the Maine state capital, located just an hour from Portland. This adorable town is known for its historic downtown (it’s a nationally designated Main Street community!) and streets lined with Victorian architecture. Speaking of historic, the Augusta’s Old Fort Western is the nation’s oldest surviving wood fort, built all the way back in 1754. Not far from the fort you’ll find Waterfront Park and the Augusta Greenway Trail, which is part of the larger, 6.5-mile Kennebec River Rail Trail, and is a great spot for strolling and biking. Travelers also love the 224-acre Viles Arboretum, with its six miles of trails. Now just imagine hiking, biking, and strolling all of that with the iconic New England fall colors all around you. Sounds like heaven! Nearby Lewiston, Bangor, and Portland are also great locations in Maine for travel jobs — or fun spots for day trips from your Augusta travel nursing job!
Hopefully our list of top 20 travel nurse destinations for 2022 gave you some inspiration and got you dreaming of where care will take you this year and beyond! Even if none of these hotspots feel right for you right now, you can keep them in mind for later down the road. Plus, we’ve always got tons of open jobs — with new ones added every day! You can use our job search tool to search for your perfect fit by title, specialty, and/or location.