Cappadocia, located in central Turkey, is a mesmerizing and fairy-tale-like city known for its otherworldly landscapes, ancient cave dwellings, and hot air balloon rides. When it comes to transportation options for Cappadocia, there are several convenient and reliable choices available.
Below you’ll find all the essential details you need about how to get to Cappadocia (Kapadokya) from other parts of Turkey, as well as how to get around in Cappadocia.
How to Get to Cappadocia
Nevşehir Airport (NAV) is the closest airport to Cappadocia, located just 40 minutes from the city center. Kayseri Erkilet Airport (ASR) is around 70 minutes east of Cappadocia.
In the summer, Turkish Airlines has daily flights from Istanbul, Antalya, and Izmir to Nevsehir Airport. For both Anadolu Jet and Turkish Airlines customers, there is a shuttle that will take you to Cappadocia’s city center for around $10. If you are flying with a different airline, the most direct way to get to Cappadocia is to hire a transfer, taxi, or rental car from the airport, or be in contact with your hotel about a pick-up.
Many visitors opt to use their hotel’s own shuttle service. You can get information about shuttle services when booking your accommodation or check with local tour companies.
There is also a bus that leaves from the Nevşehir Airport at the top of every hour called the Tüzköy minibus. This bus will take you to Gülşehir and from there you can catch a local city bus into the main city center of Cappadocia. Except for the fact that this is a much longer and more roundabout way, it is a good option if you have a tight budget or have extra time to spend.
If you are flying into Kayseri, transportation will clearly be a bit more expensive as it is around 70 minutes away from Cappadocia.
One of the best options is to hire a transfer from Kayseri Airport, either by talking to your hotel ahead of time or hiring one at the airport. A taxi will be most costly as the distance is far, but it is also a simple option as they are easy to hire. If your budget, allows, it is the easiest way to travel.
Another reasonable option is to rent a car, as it is nice to have a vehicle once you arrive in Cappadocia to drive between the main towns which are all just about 10 minutes apart.
Our top recommended option is to hire a transfer, either from a travel agency or from a transfer company.
They are very spacious, clean, and have greater privacy and comfort. While transfers are great for trips to and from the airport, they are also very convenient for traveling between the main cities of Cappadocia such as Göreme, Ürgüp, and Avanos, which are all just about 10-15 minutes apart.
It means that you can discover most of the natural treasures in just a day. If you are in need of assistance with hiring a transfer or booking a tour, we recommend Pupa Tourism.
This reputable agency is available to make any arrangements for you anywhere in Turkey and can provide quality guided tours, hotel reservations, car rental, airport pick-up, and more. Pupa is one of the best-staffed agencies in the country with personnel in Istanbul, Cappadocia, and Ephesus.
A much cheaper and more scenic option is to take a bus. This does take more time but can be a great way to experience more of Turkish culture and catch more of the scenery. You can wear your headphones and savor the majestic scene of Nevşehir before your eyes.
From Istanbul, the trip is about 10 hours (you can choose a trip with or without rest stops) and ticket prices are around $25. The trips are usually overnight, the buses are quite clean and comfortable and WiFi is usually available. The bus will drop you off at the Nevşehir Otogar (bus station) which is around 25 minutes from the city center. If you contact your hotel ahead of time, they will usually provide a transfer to pick you up, or you can easily take a taxi.
If you are staying in Göreme (the city center), depending on your starting location, you can book a bus that takes you directly there, and then you have no need for a transfer or taxi.
Travel from Ankara to Cappadocia
The most common and convenient way to travel from Ankara to Cappadocia is by bus. Car is also a reasonable way to travel. However, the train is not recommended because it takes longer and is less convenient (unless you go via Konya). Forget taking a plane because there are no direct flights.
Here is a guide for Traveling from Ankara to Cappadocia.
Travel from Antalya to Cappadocia
The fastest way to reach Cappadocia from Antalya is by taking a domestic flight. Just two airlines offer nonstop flights in the summer months, otherwise, you must accept to make your travel time longer and fly via Istanbul, or (better) go by bus or car, which is a more economical option, stopping to see the sights at Beyşehir and/or Konya, and along the Silk Road.
Here is a detailed guide for Traveling From Antalya to Cappadocia.
Travel from Istanbul to Cappadocia
You can take a direct flight from Istanbul to Nevsehir-Kapadokya Airport and Kayseri Erkilet Airport. It is both a time-efficient option and the fastest way to travel. As another option, you can take direct overnight buses or high-speed trains and buses via Ankara or Konya.
Here is a detailed guide for Traveling From Istanbul to Cappadocia.
Travel from Izmir and Ephesus to Cappadocia
Here is a detailed guide for traveling from İzmir & Ephesus to Cappadocia.
Travel from Pamukkale and Denizli to Cappadocia
One of the most convenient and economical ways to travel from Pamukkale to Cappadocia is by bus. However, you should take into account that it is going to be a long trip. The bus journey takes around 8 to 10 hours depending on the route. Or you can choose to drive via Konya.
Here is a detailed guide for traveling from Pamukkale to Cappadocia.
Transport in Cappadocia
Unfortunately, except for the airport shuttles, local transport in Cappadocia is not well suited for sightseeing. Mini-buses travel between towns now and then throughout the day, but they do not pass by all of the sights. A private transfer and tour are often the best way to see the most popular sights, especially if you have limited time.
The best ways to see the sights are by rental car, private car-and-driver hired from a travel agency, or on a guided tour. Luckily, there are numerous reputable guided tours that can take you around the Cappadocia region, including the main towns and underground city.
Cappadocia is one of Turkey's gems, and exploring its ancient sights is a must when you visit Turkey. It is easily accessible from most major cities in Turkey and there are a variety of transport options that can get you to Nevsehir Airport and Kayseri Airport. Regardless of your transportation choice, Cappadocia has many memorable sights such as the Goreme Open Air Museum and Derinkuyu Underground City. Enjoy your travels to Cappadocia, filled with mesmerizing landscapes and rich cultural experiences in Central Anatolia.