Top national parks to visit while on assignment

If you find yourself near one of America’s national parks while on your healthcare traveler assignments, you’ll seriously want to consider visiting. There are 423 national parks in the United States, making no shortage of land to explore. The scenery ranges from deserts to snowy mountains, canyons to beautiful valleys of lush green trees.

One huge perk of being a traveling healthcare professional with RTG Medical is you get to experience what all the states have to offer. Along with getting paid to work where you want, you get to adventure to some incredible places. Here are a few of the best national parks that are a must-see. 

Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

The Grand Canyon is so naturally beautiful, it was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can enjoy a day trip or camp overnight. There are miles of hiking trails and several great points to stop and take in the scenery. The weather is almost always sunny, and if it were to rain, it would be brief. You’ll want to visit this one-of-a-kind, unique landscape if you find yourself in Arizona.

Glacier National Park, Montana

Glacier National Park is still a must, even though many glaciers have lost 50 percent or more of their coverage in recent years due to climate change. There are lots of outdoor activities to do and wildlife to see. You can drive or hike through this park. Head out to see the glaciers, spectacular views, and other landmarks in this park while traveling in Montana.

Yosemite National Park, California

From the endless waterfalls to the sequoia trees and the starry nights, you definitely won’t want to miss out on a hike through this park. You’ll want to make sure you get to Glacier Point, where you can see Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, Vernal Fall, Nevada Fall, and Clouds Rest. There are such amazing views and only a few of the many reasons to stop into Yosemite.

Denali National Park, Alaska

Even in the cold, this snowy landscape will blow you away. Denali National Park is home to the tallest mountain in North America, Mount McKinley, now known as Mount Denali. There are tons of outdoor activities you can take part in. You’ll want to make sure you see Wonder Lake. Wonder Lake is an incredible place where the lake meets the Alaskan Mountain Range; you will be swept off your feet with this breathtaking experience. You will also see an abundance of wildlife wandering throughout the park. At night, you might even be able to see the Northern Lights.

Mount Rainier National Park, Washington

It can be nerve-racking to visit a volcano. However, Mount Rainier has its own charm. If you visit during Wildflower Season, you can see all the colors of the flowers in bloom. There are tons of clear, alpine lakes you can sit at and take in a breath of fresh air. If you hike the Wonderland Trial, you’ll get to see waterfalls and other unparalleled scenery. Don’t let the words “active volcano” keep you away from this beautiful park.

Zion National Park, Utah

Zion National Park offers a vast amount of plant life and colorful cliffs. This park is just a couple of hours away from Las Vegas. The Narrows has become one of the most incredible hiking trails throughout America, with a 2,000 ft deep slot canyon. It’s best to hike to get the most out of this park, but you can still drive or bike if you prefer. You can even partake in “glamping” and get an awesome view of the stars at night.

Badlands National Park, South Dakota

If you find yourself traveling to South Dakota in the fall, you’ll for sure want to see this grassy landscape. There is so much beauty to be found in the tall mixed grades and eroded buttes. There are both easy and experienced trails to take a hike on. There are over 30 different butterfly species found in this park, along with the other wildlife. This park is also home to the fossils of extinct species. With so much to see and do, you’ll for sure want to take a visit here.

Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

This national park was created when a volcano erupted, creating a caldera in the Cascade Mountains. Watchman Peak is where you can get the best view of this crater. The water in Crater Lake is the bluest water you’ll probably ever lay your eyes on. You can easily take a weekend trip to this park and see everything it has to offer.

Everglades National Park, Florida

Everglades National Park is a bit different than the rest. You can rent a kayak or canoe and take in this bit of paradise at your own pace. You can see unique animals such as manatees, turtles, and dolphins. You can also hop on a boat ride and see alligators. You can learn so much about nature by visiting this national park.

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Yellowstone is often known for its geyser, Old Faithful.  But there are so many others located throughout the park. You can also embark into the forests, and see the waterfalls. You can sit back and enjoy a picnic while taking in all the wildlife. Check out this park, and maybe you’ll a geyser erupt. 

Start your healthcare traveler journey with RTG Medical 

If visiting these 10 inspiring national parks isn’t enough of a reason to become a traveling healthcare professional, talking to us at RTG Medical will help you discover all the benefits. Contact us today to find out how you can begin your healthcare traveler assignment!

Healthcare Traveler Food Guide (Major Cities)

You’re in a new city and craving something delicious. What is great about being a traveling healthcare professional with medical staffing travel agencies is that you get to try new foods in different cities quite often. We want to offer some tips and tricks when it comes to finding good food while on your assignment. Here are seven major cities where travel nurses can find some great eats. 

Seattle, Washington

Seattle has a vibrant food scene not many are aware of. Located in the Pacific Northwest, you’ll find tons of locally sourced food in restaurants coming from forests, waters, and even fresh produce from Pike’s Place Market.Have you ever tried a hotdog smothered in cream cheese and grilled onions? Try one at Pike’s Place or Capitol Hill. Geoduck is another Seattle staple, you can find this giant clam at Taylor Shellfish and Lam’s Seafood. Teriyaki from Toshi’s Teriyaki Grill and Grillbird Teryaki is a must if you love this speciality. Are you a sushi lover? You’ll want to hit Shiro Kashiba for fresh edomae-style sushi. Get out of your comfort zone and try something new in Seattle.

Portland, Oregon

Feeling homesick? If you’re ever thinking about home while out on your traveling assignment in Portland, luckily you are in the capital  of genuine home-cooking. If you’re in the mood for locally brewed beers, coffee, salmon, or ice cream, Portland will happily dine you. If you’ve been craving barbecue, don’t miss out on Eem, where you’ll find burnt-end brisket curry and baby-back ribs with a Thai twist. Need a glass of wine after a long day? Try OK Omens, a local favorite for wine. Nostrana is a must if you want an amazing slice of pizza. The Portland food scene will make you feel right at home.

Chicago, Illinois

Everyone knows that Chicago is known for its deep dish pizza and hotdogs. But where do you go to get the best ones? How about trying a few on this list, 20 best places to find a hot dog in the city, or a few of these, 25 pizza restaurants you must try. Along with the chic locations in the city, you’ll find some Michelin-starred restaurants if you’re looking for something a bit fancier. These Midwest food jives are sure to warm your heart up.

New York, New York

You will find just about every type of food in New York City, including Italian, Greek, Lebanese, Chinese, Vegan, Mexican, and Sushi. If you need a quick bite, grab a hot dog at a street stand, or a $1 slice of New York Style pizza around just about every corner of the city. If you’re hungry for a super yummy sandwich, be sure to visit Katz Deli. If you’re hungry for something a bit more upscale, try Los Mariscos in the Chelsea Market or Wildare in the Lower East Side. You are  sure to find the best foodie spots in New York by just taking a walk around the city.

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans is home to local crawfish, beignets, gumbo, and Po-Boys. Food is the culture behind New Orleans, and although you’re here because of your medical staffing travel agency, you can let your inner foodie out. You’ll need to try one of the 18 restaurants serving the best gumbo. Domilise’s located in Uptown is your go-to place for Po-Boys. If you’re hungry for crawfish, definitely try Barrow’s. You are sure to find something delicious with the Creole inspired cuisine New Orleans has to offer. 

Austin, TX

Austin is known for its Tex-Mex and barbecue, but you can also find burgers, pizzas, and cocktails. Franklin’s Barbeque is a must if you love barbecue. Salty Sow in East Austin is a great place if you’re in the mood for American Gastro Pub food. Indulge in a great take on tapas at Barlata on South Lamar. If you’re going for more of a bar vibe, Parkside on 6th Street is sure to please you. Whatever you’re craving, Austin’s restaurant scene will leave you with a full and satisfyed stomach.

San Francisco, California

In San Francisco, you’ll find the use of local ingredients feeding into chef’s passions. It’s hard to find something that is not farm-to-table in San Fran. You’ll find fresh salads, mission-style burritos, and soup dumplings. You’ll also find amazing sandwiches at Lucca Delicatessen, and seafood at Sotto Mare. You’ll find no better way to take part in this interesting food scene than to adventure in your free time in San Francisco.

Let your inner foodie out while traveling with medical staffing travel agencies

We hope you’ll be able to take a seat, settle down, and experience some great food cultures while on your traveling assignment. Being a traveling healthcare professional can be exhausting, but also rewarding. You deserve to take a little break and enjoy trying some new food, or maybe a new twist on a classic you already love. 

If the perks of being a traveling professional aren’t already exciting enough, indulging in different food in new cities is sure to spark an interest. If you’ve been wanting to travel, choose RTG Medical. We’ll pair you with a recruiter to find the perfect assignment for you. Contact us today.

Meet RTG Medical’s Newest Hire

RTG Medical is excited to welcome Melissa Byrd! She brings an enthusiastic, positive energy to the table, and is a beam of sunshine at the office. Get to know her! She answered RTG’s new employee questionnaire- and it’s chock-full of everything that makes her tick!

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If you could have dinner with any one person, living or dead, who would it be and why? Ellen Degeneres because she is amazing, funny and full of positive energy. I love people like her.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be and how would you use it? I would want to have constant positive energy and to be able to give it to others! I am a pretty happy person, so I want to share that with others.

What was the best concert experience you’ve had and why? Tiebreaker between Home Free and Garth Brooks. I just love music in general– all genres pretty much!

Name something on your “bucket list” and why? I would love to go to New York City at Christmas time to see the trees on Rockefeller Plaza all lit up. 

If your house was burning and you could only save one item, what would it be and why? Besides anyone in my family, I would save my journaling bible because it is special to me. 

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Melissa shares about how her family is one of the most important things to her. She loves spending time with her three children AJ, Anna, and Jackson.

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When she has the chance to visit, she loves to spend time with her two brothers Mitch– who lives in Chicago–and Merritt– who lives in Seattle.

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Pictured above is Melissa’s mom, dad, brothers, and sisters-in-law.

Melissa is such an amazing, caring person; RTG Medical is thankful to have her on the recruiting team, helping healthcare professionals find their #adventurewithRTG.

If you or someone you know is interested in joining RTG Medical’s growing team, click here to apply!

Live Like A Local While Traveling in Colorado

Colorado

The next destination in our “Live like a Local” blog series is taking us to Breckenridge, Colorado. RTG Medical wants to ensure if you’re heading to Colorado for an assignment, we assist you with a couple of fun to-dos if you’re near Breckenridge! With an elevation of 9,600 ft. above sea level, the town of Breckenridge is nestled in the mountains. Breckenridge is nationally recognized for its historic scenery and the wide variety of dining and nightlife hotspots. First stop… Cajun food.

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The Lost Cajun

Our first stop in Breckenridge is The Lost Cajun featuring seafood, Cajun and Creole, soup, and American food. Instead of chips and salsa, the restaurant serves a variety of delicious gumbo and jambalaya samples to start. Don’t forget an order of alligator bites as an appetizer; you won’t regret it. Served on the left is a house favorite, The Po Boys, and the right features a Seafood Platter. Both dishes were seasoned exceptionally, just as you’d find them in New Orleans. The owner, Raymond Griffin moved from Barataria, Louisiana to the Rockies to accomplish his and his wife’s dream of living in the mountains and opening a little gumbo shop.

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Crepes a la Cart

The second stop in Breckenridge is Crepes a La Cart featuring sweet and savory filled crepes. While traveling through downtown stop by the hut for breakfast, lunch, or dessert with the variety of options of toppings. Stopping is a must-do while in town because of the delicious crepes, the friendly atmosphere, and the great view. The hut also offers an ultimate hot chocolate and it is to die for. The hot chocolate comes with whip crème, chocolates, and caramel drizzled to top it off.

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BreckConnect Gondola

The third stop in Breckenridge is the BreckConnect Gondola. The gondola and other transportation services are a completely free service for anyone who lives or visits the town. The gondola makes it easy to travel from downtown to the bases of Peak 7 and 8. The length of the gondola system is 7,592 feet long and takes an average of 20 minutes to take a round trip. The gondola runs from June-Mid September and then opens again during ski seasons. Plus, the views are picture perfect!

If you have ever taken an assignment in Colorado and visited Breckenridge, let us know your favorite hot spots by tweeting us. If Colorado sounds like an area you’re interested in traveling to, check out our job board to see what positions we have open, then give us a call!

Live Like A Local While Traveling in Southern California

Continuing on with our “Live Like a Local” blog series, we now bring you our next exciting destination to travel to… Southern California! In Southern California, there are two major cities, Los Angeles and San Diego, in addition to a large homegrown surf and skateboard culture.

Our journey in SoCal begins in Los Angeles (L.A.) the second-largest city in the United States.

Griffith Observatory

Los Angeles – Griffith Observatory & Dodger Stadium

TripAdvisor rates the Griffith Observatory at one of the Top 10 places you should visit while traveling to L.A. On top of a beautiful hill overlooking the city, Griffith Observatory offers a planetarium, exhibits, public telescopes, café, bookstore and the best views of the Los Angeles basin. Plus, admission is FREE!

Even if you aren’t a baseball fan, Dodger Stadium is a must-see venue in the city. Since 1962, Dodger Stadium (baseball’s third-oldest stadium) has welcomed fans from all corners of the globe and provided them with its breathtaking views and its storied past. If interested, you can sign up for a behind-the-scenes stadium tour. Additionally, some of your favorite Hollywood celebrities frequent games, so you might catch a selfie with one. Just be sure that if you go, you eat one of their delicious Dodger Dogs!

the Observatory offers a planetarium, exhibits, public telescopes, cafe, bookstore, and the best views of the Los Angeles basin. Admission is free, and visitors may drive directly to the Observatory and park in its lots and roads.

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Santa Monica Pier & Venice Beach Boardwalk

Santa Monica Pier offers a ton of year-round events including concerts, Popups, marathons and other races. It is also pretty cool that parts of some very famous movies were filmed on or around Santa Monica Pier such as “Forrest Gump,” “A Night at the Roxbury,” “Titanic,” and “Iron Man.” The pier has several rides for both children and adults. Santa Monica offers both a laid-back dining feel (i.e., Blue Plate Taco) and also upscale dining options such as The Lobster. The Los Angeles Times said that The Lobster offers, “A long list of quality seafood from fresh Maine Lobster to Wild Salmon varieties. For a seafood dinner in Santa Monica, it doesn’t get much better.” Plus, you can watch the beautiful sunset from both restaurants…bonus!

If you are in the mood for some sight-seeing and people-watching, you will love the area of Venice Beach. It is a lively and popular area that some people have coined the nickname “muscle beach.” You will experience a lot of cultures, beach dining and shopping up and down the famous boardwalk.

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Pacific Coast Highway & Captain Jack’s

If you have time, make sure to drive down Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) for the beautiful views of the ocean, hillside, and curvy roads. There is a hidden gem in the town of Sunset Beach right off of PCH on the oceanfront, called Captain Jack’s. It’s hands-down one of the best places in the state to get top-notch surf and turf including Alaskan King Crab, Australian Lobster Tail, Prime Rib, Filet and more! Be sure to bring your appetite!

Huntington Beach & Aloha Grill & Bar

Huntington Beach (locally called “HB”) is known for its long (9.5 miles) sandy beach, mild climate and excellent surfing conditions. Not surprisingly, HB’s nickname is “Surf City.” You have a nice view of Catalina Island off the coast, and there is no shortage of beach shops and restaurants to keep you busy. The Aloha Grill & Bar, just east of the beach has both indoor and outdoor areas to drink, dine and enjoy. You must try one of their infamous Rainbows (a sugary cocktail that includes multicolored frozen goodness infused with lots of rum…and a dark rum float on top). Do not drive after trying one of these!

Newport Beach

Just a few minutes south on PCH from Huntington is the ever-popular Newport Beach. Newport still offers a casual atmosphere with a little more glitz and glam considering some of their million dollar homes and expensive dining options. You may recall the television show, “The O.C.” based on high-school friends exploring life in Newport Beach (part of Orange County – The O.C.).

We recommend that you tour Newport Harbor and Newport bay to see some of the beautiful beach homes where many famous stars have lived (John Wayne, anyone?!). You can tour these areas on foot, by vehicle or via ferry. You can also take a day-trip ferry to Catalina Island and sport fish or whale watch.

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Laguna Beach & San Diego

Continuing south to Laguna Beach, you will explore more incredible views of the ocean and homes built on a grade (very similar to an Italy feel). Laguna is nestled between seven miles of hidden coves and majestic canyons. It is a year-round retreat for art lovers, outdoor adventurers, beachgoers, families and romantics. Aliso Beach Park, located in South Laguna, is the only beach that provides fire pits within town. It is a great spot for an evening bonfire, so bring your friends and throw something on the grill while watching the sunset!

Finishing up our journey in Southern California, we land in San Diego, which has been called “the birthplace of California.” San Diego is a larger city (8th largest in the U.S.), and it’s remarkably clean and well-kept. Tucked tightly into 16.5 blocks, the Gaslamp Quarter is a walkable urban playground located in Downtown San Diego adjacent to the Convention Center, Petco Park, and Horton Plaza. It’s accessible via the freeway and several trolley and bus lines. Described as the West Coast’s premier entertainment district, guests and immerse themselves in the rich Victorian architecture and history, dine with world-renowned chefs and dance the night away at nationally-recognized nightlife venues.

We’ve just provided a few of the many exciting things to do and see in Southern California, and that is just a start. Other things the city has to offer are film history and culture, surfing lessons, hiking, A-list sporting events, and world-renown concerts. You will NEVER run out of things to do!

If are in the SoCal area or have traveled there before, let us know your favorite hot spots by tweeting us. If Southern California sounds like an area you’re interested in traveling to, check out our job board to see what positions we have open, then give us a call!

Live Like A Local While Traveling in Chicago

Following up on our previous “Live Like a Local” blog on traveling while in Dallas, we wanted to bring you our next exciting destination city to travel to… Chicago! With close to 3 million residents citywide and nearly 10 million people metropolitan-wide, there is never a shortage of activities to do or sights to see in “The Windy City!

St. Patrick's Day

So our journey in Chicago begins in the ever popular “Wrigleyville,” the neighborhood surrounding Wrigley Field.

The Cubby Bear – Wrigleyville
Located directly across from Wrigley Field stadium, The Cubby Bear is one of the most well-known sports bars in Wrigleyville. The location is HUGE, with 30,000 square feet of space on multiple levels featuring over 75 TVs. The Cubby Bear also features live music, a pool and great food, such as their Cubby Bear Burger (steakburger, pancetta, queso dip on a toasted pretzel bun), World Famous garlic fries and buffalo wings. The neighborhood feel of Wrigleyville invites you in to explore other restaurants, bars, and sight-seeing.

Millennium Park – Downtown Chicago
If you are more of an outdoorsy traveler, you will enjoy heading downtown to the northwestern portion of Grant Park to walk through Millennium Park which covers over 24-acres of land right by Lake Michigan. There are many sights to see, and the park is clean and vibrant. If you have children, they will love the outdoor park equipment, ice skating (seasonal) and water splash park areas. Adults will enjoy free concerts, private events and sights and sounds of beautiful downtown Chicago…very picturesque with all the skyscrapers in view from the park.

The Gage & The Magnificent Mile
Just across Michigan Avenue from Millennium Park, you will find tons of shopping and many more incredible restaurants. One award-winning gastro pub to rave about is The Gage. Entrees include fresh fish & chips, venison osso bucco, and bone-in prime ribeye. If you stop in during the day for lunch, be sure to try their Pabst Blue Ribbon beer battered fried pickles, smoked salmon BLT or the turkey club. The food isn’t the only thing to tout… their ambiance and service are top-notch!

About a mile north on Michigan Avenue, you will experience some of the best shopping of your life at The Magnificent Mile — all within walking distance through downtown Chicago. The Magnificent Mile boasts more than 460 retailers, including popular brands, major department stores, and international luxury labels and designers. Not to worry, there are more economic-friendly retailers in the area. The Magnificent Miles also has many gourmet stores for all you foodies and chocolatiers out there!

Best Time of Year: St. Patrick’s Day
If you are lucky enough to live or travel to Chicago during St. Patrick’s Day, you are lucky enough to experience some of the best Chicago has to offer. One excursion recommended is the annual Green Beer & Bagels Tour. The shoreline area of the city “gets its green on” in honor of the holiday with a special Architecture River Tour featuring complimentary bagels, St. Patrick’s Day favors and a special Irish-themed guided tour on the green-for-a-day Chicago River. This is definitely a photo op you don’t want to miss!

We’ve just provided a few of the many wonderful things to do and see in the Windy City, but that isn’t all. Other things the city has to offer are beautiful museums, history, culture and world-renown concerts. If are in Chicago area or have traveled there before, let us know your favorite hot spots by tweeting us. If Chicago sounds like a city you’re interested in traveling to, check out our job board to see what positions we have open, then give us a call!

Living Like a Local While Traveling in Dallas

Everyone knows that one of the greatest benefits of a traveling medical professional is having the opportunity to explore new cities. We’re kicking February off by highlighting key places to visit in cities all across the country… And we’ve decided to start in the Lone Star State!

Dallas is home to many great places to eat, have a good drink, and there are countless sights to see. Here are just some (highly encouraged) recommendations from a Dallas resident of her favorite places while in the city.

Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 8.52.46 AMPecan Lodge
Pecan Lodge is recommended as the best Texas BBQ in Dallas, and it was featured on Diners Drive-in and Dives. They only stay open until the food runs out for the day and they always have a line that forms 30 minutes before they open at 11am, but it is WORTH IT! Pecan Lodge got its start in a farmers market and became so popular they relocated to an area called “Deep Ellum” which is an awesome area to check out. It’s more up and coming, but Deep Ellum is known for their art. Tons of cool graffiti work on walls, lots of great restaurants, and cool boutiques to check out. Deep Ellum Brewery is also located nearby for a drink after eating.

Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 8.47.14 AMTrinity Groves
Trinity Groves is full of things to do for everyone. It has a phenomenal view of downtown Dallas and there are a handful of awesome restaurants to choose from. One of our travelers recommends Sushi Bayashi, LUCK, and the Cake Bar. LUCK is popularly known for promoting the local craft beer industry by serving everything fresh on tap and only beers brewed within a 75-mile radius. During your visit to Trinity Groves, take a walk across the Continental Avenue Bridge and admire the views of Downtown Dallas.

Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 8.07.09 AMMi Cocina
Mi Cocina is located in the uptown of Dallas. Uptown is where you go to see and be seen. Be ready to see some of the fanciest cars you’ve ever seen. Mi Cocina is very well known for their Mambo Taxis’. It is their house sangria swirled with their house margarita. The drinks are strong and delicious. Texas is very well known for their chips and queso (it’s at EVERY restaurant) and Mi Cocina’s is really good. After a bite to eat, head down to McKinney Avenue to check out their vibrant bars.

If you’re in Dallas or have traveled there before, let us know your favorite stops by tweeting us. We’d love to hear from you! If this sounds like a city you’re interested in traveling to, check out our jobs board to see what positions we have open, then give us a call!

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