Published on March 26, 2021

Fresno Yosemite International Airport (FAT) is the closest airport to Yosemite National Park, and worlds away from the mad bustle of LAX and SFO.  With major air carrier service, on-airport rental car center and amenities that beautifully preview the iconic terrain ahead, Fresno Yosemite International Airport is your go-to Yosemite airport.

A regional airport in Fresno, California, the Fresno International Airport offers the flexibility of a large airport without the stress – lines including Aeromexico, Alaska Airlines, Allegiant, American, Delta, Frontier, Southwest Airlines, United and Volaris offer Yosemite-bound travelers the best way to Yosemite Mariposa’s natural wonderland. That means that you’ll have more time on your trip to Yosemite to explore world-famous landmarks like Yosemite Valley and El Capitan – no matter the time of year.

When flying to the signature national park in California’s Sierra, there’s no better commercial airport near Yosemite National Park than FAT.

Yosemite Adventure Takes Flight from FAT Airport

Entrance signs at Fresno Yosemite International Airport
The Fresno International Airport is small and easy to navigate.

Yosemite is one of the most beautiful places on earth.  Its natural splendor is timeless, awe-inspiring, and even spiritual.  As one of the best airports near Yosemite, Fresno Yosemite International Airport delivers keynote advantages that are just as mighty from a traveler’s perspective:  easy, fast and convenient.

  • Easy ““ FAT is right-sized, with one terminal and 10 gates. Navigating the air terminal is a snap, where travelers will find their journey from jetway to highway a simple, linear and inviting experience. Travel time to Yosemite will vary, but 90 minutes is your over/under for airport to national park entrance.
  •  Fast ““ Arrivals at FAT are fast with baggage claim and traveler amenities designed to be easily navigated. Rental car counters are located directly behind baggage claim, and with on-airport vehicle pickup and dropoff, there’s no need for crowded shuttles. Before you can say Chilnualna, you’re on your way to higher ground!
  • Convenient ““ Fresno Yosemite International Airport offers non-stop flights to 15 major cities, including Chicago, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Portland, Salt Lake City, San Diego, San Francisco, and Seattle in the U.S., and three additional cities in Mexico with direct connections through Central and South America.

FAT Airport Transportation

Whether you’re looking for public transportation or a quick and easy way to rent a car, the FAT Airport has options! The Fresno International Airport has an in-terminal car rental center with companies including Enterprise, Hertz, Avis, and many more, and right outside the airport is a rideshare drop-off and pick-up zone for travelers using Uber and Lyft. Additionally, the Yosemite Area Regional Transit System (YARTS) is available with seasonal “Gold Route” bus service between the FAT Airport and multiple stops within Yosemite National Park. Advance reservations are available and highly recommended.

Fresno InternationaL Airport Parking

The Fresno International Airport has a multi-level, covered parking structure located directly across from the terminal. The parking garage accepts either credit card or cash for their hourly and flat daily rates for its 917 parking spaces, and includes amenities like ADA accessible covered parking, electric vehicle charging stations, park-assist technology to guide motorists to available spaces, and pay kiosks.  Plus, long-term parking rates at FAT are among the least expensive in California.

FAT Airport Amenities

Giant sequoia display in Fresno International Airport
Life-size giant sequoia displays welcome visitors at Fresno Yosemite International Airport.

Fresno Yosemite International Airport scores high marks for amenities and ambiance as well.  A little extra time before your flight?  Score a local craft libation or tasty snack, and wander through a life-size depiction of a Giant Sequoia Forest to get an enticing preview of the colossal groves of Sequoiadendron giganteum that thrive in Yosemite Mariposa.

The FAT Airport’s Art & Culture program enriches the traveler experience through contemporary art, musical performances, and other cultural touches. FAT is a showcase of local talent from California’s Central Valley region.  Even the FAT baggage carousel features dramatic, mural-size photos of dramatic vistas including Half Dome. Selfie ops abound, so tag your pics and post with #YosemiteNation and #iflyfresno to get in the game.

Baggage claim with Half Dome mural
You’ll know you’re almost in Yosemite with these beautiful murals in the baggage claim area.

Go local with the menus at FAT’s John Muir Tavern, checking all the boxes with great Sierra Alpine cuisine and a deep list of regional wine (including vintages from Fresno State Winery) and craft beer from Fresno’s Tioga Sequoia Brewing Co.  Lovers of the bean and leaf will find a Starbucks Café ready to serve.

FAT’s Information Center is the resource hub of the airport providing passengers and guests with trip planning information, wayfinding assistance, complimentary tourism guides, attraction brochures, hotel information, ground transportation tips, maps and directions, and terminal paging assistance.  It is conveniently  located near the main entrance of the terminal lobby.

All this to say, Fresno Yosemite International Airport is not only the closest airport to Yosemite National Park ““ it’s also the most fun to fly.

Go Your Own Way via FAT

There is a legacy of travelers making the once-difficult journey to experience the glory of Yosemite National Park.  John Muir famously walked to Yosemite from San Francisco Bay in 1868.  Buffalo Soldier Colonel Charles Young rode a similar route via horseback at the turn of the 20th century, while the first Yosemite leisure travelers took arduous combinations of rail and stagecoach.  Today, those sacrifices are well behind us – and since it’s so easy it’s time to visit! Fresno Yosemite International Airport and its ever-expanding services and world-class amenities provide travelers with the best air gateway to Yosemite Mariposa’s storybook Sierra majesty.

Categories: General Travel Tips, Travel and Transportation