Localisation of both viral and cellular proteins to the nucleolus is determined by a variety of factors including nucleolar localisation signals (NoLSs), but how these signals operate is not clearly understood. The nucleolar trafficking of wild type viral proteins and chimeric proteins, which contain altered NoLSs, were compared to investigate the role of NoLSs in dynamic nucleolar trafficking. Three viral proteins from diverse viruses were selected which localised to the nucleolus; the coronavirus infectious bronchitis virus nucleocapsid (N) protein, the herpesvirus saimiri ORF57 protein and the HIV-1 Rev protein. The chimeric proteins were N protein and ORF57 protein which had their own NoLS replaced with those from ORF57 and Rev proteins, respectively. By analysing the sub-cellular localisation and trafficking of these viral proteins and their chimeras within and between nucleoli using confocal microscopy and photo-bleaching we show that NoLSs are responsible for different nucleolar localisations and trafficking rates.