Travel Nurse Assignments: Live Like a Local – Anchorage, AK!

Welcome to Anchorage, AK! Anchorage is the Alaska’s most populous city with almost 300,000 residents. A travel nurse contract in Anchorage means the best of city conveniences and breath-taking views of nature. Just a few hours south, you’ll find Denali National Park, and a few hours north, you’ll hit Kenai Fjords National Park and the list has only just begun!

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Outdoor Activities Await

Alaska has almost 60 million acres of unspoiled wilderness, and Anchorage is the perfect launching point for your outdoor adventures. Of the eight national parks within Alaska’s borders, Anchorage is in between two of the most popular: Denali and Kenai Fjords. Denali is situated around Mt. Denali, the tallest mountain in North America, and boasts miles of hiking trails and endless wildlife viewing opportunities. Responsible off-trail hiking is encouraged, and it’s a great way to really immerse yourself in the Alaskan bush.

A sled dog team in rural Anchorage

Kenai Fjords National Park was established to preserve and showcase Alaska’s stunning natural glaciers. Today, nearly 51% of the park is covered in glaciers, which are constantly changing the landscape. The majority of the park is only accessible by boat, and the best way to see the park is by taking a boat tour through the fjords. The tours run daily in the summer, and are a great way to learn more about how the park was formed. The boat tour is also great for viewing whales, seabirds, and other marine mammals who all call the park home.

A whale breaching in Kenai Fjords National Park

City of Anchorage

Not really feeling up for a hiking expedition? Looking to stay in the city? Don’t worry, there’s still plenty to do in Anchorage, itself. For a good introduction to the city, start with a city tour, complete with Alaskan Smoked Salmon and Reindeer Sausage to taste! The Alaskan Wildlife Conservation Center is a nature preserve that allows visitors to see several of Alaska’s native animals. Learn about brown bears, wood bison, muskox, wolverines and more, as you walk along a 1.5 mile interpretive loop.

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Furthermore, there are several sites close to Anchorage that are worth exploring. The Flattop Mountain Trail is a great spot for hiking just outside the city, or take the scenic Alaskan Railroad from Anchorage to Fairbanks for a fun excursion. In addition, Anchorage is the start of the Iditarod Sled Dog Race, and if you’re lucky enough to be in Anchorage in March, you can see the dogs off at the starting line on Fourth Avenue downtown.

You can see brown bears, and other native Alaskan wildlife at the Alaskan Wildlife Conservation Center in Anchorage.

Food and Drink

When you think of Alaskan cuisine, seafood is probably one of the first things that comes to mind. There are several restaurants in Anchorage where you can get authentic seafood, including the Glacier Brewhouse, which specializes in fish and chips and fresh crab legs! Or, try Campobello Bistro, known for their seafood pasta dishes! Looking for quick comfort food? Stop by the Alaska Sausage and Seafood Market for delicious smoked salmon and reindeer sausage. If seafood isn’t your thing, you can’t go wrong with Darwin’s Theory, revered as one of the best dive bars in Anchorage. On the topic drinks, if you haven’t ever tried mead, or have tried it and love it, definitely give the Two Season Meadery a visit!

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Owen Davies

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