If you prefer small, uncrowded airports as I do, you’ll like Nevşehir-Kapadokya Airport (Nevşehir-Kapadokya Hava Limanı; NAV) in Tuzköy 31 km (19 miles) northeast of Nevşehir (map). It has other advantages as well.
—Fares tend to be lower.
—The ride to and from the airport is easier, faster, prettier, and more characteristic of the Cappadocia moonscape, with rock pinnacles and caves easily visible from the highway. You can start your explorations of Cappadocia right on the way from the airport.
Airlines & Flights
Airport Shuttle Vans
If you arrive in Cappadocia on a morning flight and are not jet-lagged, you may want to rent a car at NAV and drive to your destination. On the 4-lane road from the airport, signs point the way to Avanos and to Nevşehir, a 30-minute drive. From the center of Nevşehir, signs point the way onward to Ürgüp, Göreme and, a bit farther along this road, to Uçhisar, Ortahisar and other Cappadocian towns.
That having been said, unless you will use the car again on the same day that you receive it at the airport, or if you arrive at Nevşehir-Kapadokya Airport in late afternoon or evening, you may decide to use an airport shuttle van to reach your Cappadocia hotel, settle in, and hire a car on the next morning.
By the way, I don’t recommend renting a car at Cappadocia’s other airport (Kayseri’s Erkilet Airport) because of the need to drive from the airport through a busy, unfamiliar city and over roads with inadequate and sometimes confusing signage, but Nevşehir-Kapadokya Airport is different: no big city, and a pleasant, easy drive to any of Cappadocia’s towns.
—by Tom Brosnahan