Travel Nursing Assignments: Live Like A Local – Tacoma!

Welcome to Tacoma, WA!

A creative and sophisticated city, Tacoma Washington is replete with cultural spots and entertainment venues, boutique shops, lavish bars, and highly-rated restaurants. As it’s situated on the Puget Sound, it also has stunning waterfront and natural surroundings which are enjoyable at any time of year.

Tacoma is a great area to live. Famed for its delicious rhubarb and world-renowned glasswork, it also offers the convenience of being around 30 miles from Seattle, which means those wanting to work in the Emerald City don’t have to incur the high cost of living associated with it.

Mt Rainier National ParkMt. Rainier National Park

Around the City

Public transport is excellent in Tacoma, and includes the Light Link Rail which is a free shuttle service in the Downtown area, making it really easy to explore all the fun things around the city.

Hikers and lovers of nature will relish the fact that Tacoma is surrounded by trails. Dash Point State Park, Olympic National Park, and Mount Rainier Volcano within the National Park are all a short drive away. Point Defiance Park on the waterfront is also popular with locals, especially the Five Mile Drive & Trails, the aquarium and zoo within, and Owen Beach.

Point DefiancePoint Defiance Park

Close by is the wonderful Pacific Bonsai Museum, which “connects people to nature through the living art of bonsai,” and the Botanical Garden with a huge variety of rhododendrons & azaleas.


There are plenty of museums and art galleries around the city, such as the Tacoma Art Museum, the Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, and the Washington State History Museum.

Petrolheads will love LeMay: America’s Car Museum, and the Children’s Museum of Tacoma is interesting for people of all ages.

Lemay Car Museum

Other points of interest around the city include the Tacoma Narrows Bridge (two impressive suspension bridges over the Puget Sound, connecting Tacoma to the Kitsap Peninsula), and the Chihuly Bridge of Glass (which links the Thea Foss Waterway and the fascinating Museum of Glass, and has three impressive glass installations).

Chihuly Bridge

In your downtime, there’s a wealth of options for things to do – the comedy club, Tower Lanes Entertainment Center, and a large number of bars with live music are just some of the fun things to do around the city.

Food and Drink

Taste of Tacoma in June is one of the most exciting events of the year – restaurant pop-ups, street food vendors, commercial vendors, craft beer, wine, and live music in Point Defiance Park, what more could you want in the summertime?

Taste of Tacoma 2010 - Festivals Inc.

7 Seas Brewing and Odd Otter Brewing are popular with locals for excellent craft beers and atmosphere, as is Red Hot for their rotational brews and delicious hot dogs.

There are plenty of fun cocktail bars in Tacoma – for rum head to Devil’s Reef, and for experienced bartenders making the best craft cocktails head to 1022 South J. There’s also Top of Tacoma, a dive bar famed for its happy hour deals, cocktails, craft beers and food menu (replete with sharing plates and decadent sandwiches), which is a great spot for whiling the evening away.

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Tacoma is brimming with wonderful restaurants, so you’ll be spoilt for choice. Locals recommend Asado for succulent Argentine-style steaks, Lobster Shop for stunning Commencement Bay views and delicious seafood, and Indochine Asian Dining Lounge for asian fusion food in a traditional yet modern setting.

Indochine Indochine Asian Dining Lounge

For more casual fare, head to Frisko Freeze, a retro drive-thru burger and shake joint that has been around since the mid-1990s, and serves up delightful classic greasy American comfort food. There are also plenty of bakeries across the city to sample one of Tacoma’s famous rhubarb pies.


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