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How to find things to do on your days off

July 3, 2013

So you’ve arrived at your new assignment, you’re settled into your apartment and getting into the swing of things at your new job. The first few weeks are always the most hectic. It takes awhile to get familiar with your new location and scope out the area without getting lost. But once the adjustment period is over and your bearings are straight, it’s time to explore and have some fun! We have some great tips to help you find the things that interest you in the area you’re living in. Travel aficionado Brad Crawford offers some great tips to help you find the things that interest you in the area you’re living in:

Travelnursehelp.comOne of your first options is to use the “hospital search” feature on Once you find and click on the hospital you are traveling to or currently working, the website will pull up all kinds of great information about the hospital and the surrounding area including: Google maps of the hospital, number of beds, average salary for that state, apartment rates, and a general list of locations nearby. The website is a great place to get started but eventually you’ll probably want to get more specific about your search for things to do.

Yelp.comThat’s where comes in. Yelp is based entirely on user input. Local attractions and businesses are ranked based on user reviews either in a list view or map view. Yelp also offers a lot of options for narrowing down the list. You can sort through preset categories or you can search for anything you like. Looking for a nice park to jog in? Just type “parks for jogging” and Yelp will list parks that users have reviewed and find great for jogging. You can also download the Yelp smart phone app which is great for when you’re out exploring the area and want to find a good place to eat. is another great resource for finding things to do in your new area. Once you search and find your city, you can click on the “Things to Do” link at the top of the page. This will bring up a list ordered by highest ranking which is based on user reviews. It’s a great website for finding popular attractions and reading about what other people thought about their experience. A downside is that the list is not categorized. If you only want to find parks, you’ll have to sift through the whole list.

Word-of-MouthWhen it comes to finding out about local attractions, who better to ask than the locals? The permanent staff at the hospital you’re working at are a great resource for weeding out over-hyped and over-crowded attractions. They will also be able to point out hidden gems that are difficult to find. Look for an opportunity to ask them when they’re in a small group and you’ll spark up a great conversation. If there happen to be other travelers working, make sure you include them in the conversation. They would benefit from the answers and may have a few places in mind to share with you.

Google “visit” SearchIf you still haven’t found what you’re looking for, you can usually find a lot of good info with a simple Google search of the area you’re in. We like to search “visit [name of city]”. This will give you a list of the most popular visitor websites for the area you’re in. If a website is in the top ten on Google, it’s almost a sure bet that local businesses and attractions will make sure they are on those websites so people like you and I can find them. These websites won’t have the bells and whistles of something like Yelp, but sometimes they can also be great for finding hidden gems.

The next time you’re looking at a potential assignment, we welcome you to search for the hospital on before you even make a decision to find out more about the hospital and surrounding area. Once you’ve decided and at your next location, and are great websites for finding things to do nearby. When all else fails, word-of-mouth and a Google “visit [name of city]” search can yield really good results. Good luck and happy exploring!

As the husband of a travel nurse, Brad Crawford sees the travel nursing experience from a different perspective. While his wife, Stasha, focuses more on the “nursing” aspect, Brad is more concerned with things like the crime rate, what the weather is like, and what sort of fun things there will be nearby. Together they have created TravelNurseHelp, a website designed to combine much of the info a travel nurse needs in one place.

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