The 5 Best States for Travel Nursing This Winter

The 5 Best States for Travel Nursing This Winter

May Baker
February 7, 2023

Looking to lock in your final travel nursing assignment of 2023? We’ve compiled a list of the best states for travel nursing whether you prefer an escape from the cold or an outdoor snowy adventure.  


Known as the Grand Canyon State, this is one natural wonder of the world you can’t miss. From the snowy ski resorts of Flagstaff down to the warm desert sun of Tucson, Arizona has everything you want for a memorable winter getaway.  

Average temperatures range from 40 to 65 degrees, depending on how far north or south you are. So whether you want to hit the slopes or hike the desert trails, you can do it all in Arizona.  

On your days off, spend some time in the city of Sedona. It boasts “100 things to do” including wine tasting, horseback riding, and mind blowing stargazing. It has been said that the rocks and canyons of Sedona have healing powers capable of improving one’s mood, rebalancing the body, and transforming people’s lives. Consider Arizona the best travel nursing location to recharge and heal the soul.

Similar to other west coast travel nurse pay rates, salaries for travel nursing jobs in Arizona average $48/hour, or over $8,000/month. Salaries vary based on specialty and location.


Looking for even more variety? California offers 850 miles of coastline with mild temperatures and sunny skies. Thalassophiles will love the southern California coast. Even if the water is cold, the San Diego sun will keep you warm in the sand with 31 different beaches to choose from.  

For the outdoor enthusiast, California is home to nine national parks and over 10,000 hiking trails throughout the state. Not to mention the coastal waters for kayaking, canoeing, or boating.

Not a beach bum or outdoor buff? Los Angeles offers endless shopping and restaurant-binging along picturesque palm tree-lined streets where you could literally meet a famous celebrity walking down the street. Live like a tourist while you glimpse the famous Hollywood sign and take photos of your favorite actor’s stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  

California is known for being one of the highest-paying states for nurses, but that may also come with a higher cost of living. According to Ziprecruiter, the average salary for travel nursing jobs in California is $52/hour. Salaries vary based on specialty and location. One of the largest draws that make California one of the best states to travel nurse in is the institution of mandated RN to patient ratios.  


Maybe you prefer to experience a snowy winter this holiday season. If the idea of a cozy fire and warm fuzzy sweater is more your style then Michigan is the next stop for you. Michigan is bursting with snow adventures including skiing, fat tire biking, and climbing frozen waterfalls.

Michigan is obviously known for its Great Lakes - five in total. These are a must-see for your temporary stay in The Wolverine State. The breathtaking scenery alone makes Michigan one of the best states for travel nursing.

After you spend a day or two traversing the Great Lakes, treat yourself to a relaxing stay at the Inn at Black Star Farms, a 160-acre resort in Northern Michigan. In 2020, USA Today rated this hotel the Best Wine Country Hotel in the nation.  

Most travel nurses choose warmer climates during winter months so you will have plenty of travel nursing assignments to choose from. If you need some insight into recommended hospitals, these are the 4 best hospitals to work at in Michigan.  

As of September 2022, Ziprecruiter states the average salaries for travel nursing jobs in Michigan are $46/hour, or slightly under $8,000 per month. The top three highest-paying cities in Michigan are Dimondale, Colon, and Detroit, while the highest-paying specialty is awarded to operating room travel nurses.


Bordering Michigan state is another great winter destination. Even though you may not think of Ohio as a place for skiing, 5 major ski resorts are located on the edge of the Appalachian mountains.  

Along these same great slopes are winter trails for hiking. Or you could head over to any of the frozen lakes for ice fishing.  

Surrounding Lake Erie, there are more than 20 lighthouses that offer spectacular winter views.

Ohio is home to the historic Loveland Castle. Built in 1929 by Harry Andrews, this castle was created as a place for kids and scouts (known as the Knights of the Golden Trail) to camp. The castle is open for daily tours and even offers scout overnight trips.

Pay for travel nursing jobs in Ohio is similar to Michigan, averaging $46/hour or approximately $1900/week according to Indeed. Salaries vary based on specialty and location. Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland are the highest-paying cities.


Everything is bigger in Texas. Beaches, camping, hiking, big city culture. Texas has it all. There’s no denying the Lone Star State is one of the best states to travel in this winter.

In Austin, located in the middle of the state, winter temperatures are mild, averaging 68 degrees and seldom hitting freezing temperatures at night. In fact, winter may be the best season for travel nursing in Texas so you can enjoy the state without sweltering temperatures.

While you may not think of Texas as a beach state, there is plenty of beach access with well-known beaches like Galveston and South Padre Island. Another surprise may be the list of national parks that offer hiking, boating, and museums. Don’t forget to visit the five major cities (Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, Austin, & Fort Worth.) If you’re going to be in Dallas for the holiday season, here’s a list of the best ways to celebrate Christmas.

Pay for travel nursing jobs in Texas averages the lowest on our list at $33/hour, though there are plenty of cities, including Dallas, that average over $40/hour. Telemetry nurses are in high demand in the Lone Star State with hourly pay over $70/hour.

Ready to take the next step for your winter travel nursing job? Advantis has assignments across the country in cities small and large. Sign up for AdvantisConnect to explore and apply for jobs today.

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