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The 10 Best Locations to Fly Drones

Updated on March 12, 2019
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Dr. David Thiessen is an educator, writer, pastor, and speaker. He has authored several books on a variety of topics including Archaeology

The beginning

Drones have expanded from their original role of providing information for defence or other military purposes to becoming a national pastime. No more a tool for the military, drones have become a very popular hobby attracting those people who like to explore different regions of their cities or different States. Many cities have over 1-2,000 registered drones which makes this a very fast growing hobby.

Everyone will have their own preference as to which city or locale is the best place to fly their drones so any list describing the best locations will not be unchallenged. Not wanting to be left out, here is our list describing the top ten locations to fly one’s personal drone. We have tried to find a diverse group of locations so that all drone enthusiasts will find at least one locale to their liking. You can disagree with us if you want but you cannot deny that these are great locations to fly drones.

But first, we should state that the best place to fly any drone that is not government sanctioned are those places that do not interfere with personal privacy rights and away from traffic or other highly visible spots that are frequented by people or vehicles. This means that wide open rural spaces are the best places to fly one’s personal drone.

We also should mention that any drone flyer should check with the local governments to see what rules govern their hobby. Drone flying can turn sour if one is caught purposefully or accidentally breaking local laws.

#1. San Francisco-

This city is home to tech professionals who will more readily accept the hobby of drone flying than other cities. Its reputation for being a home for robotics and engineers make drone enthusiasts relax as they will be able to find someone they can talk to in order to learn how to fly their drones properly but also get tips on where to get the best replacement parts if an accident should happen to their drone.

Having something in common with other people, who share the hobby of drone flying makes this city a welcoming site for those who want to enjoy flying their drones and helps make their pastime more fun. The scenery around San Francisco is also a very big drawing card as it mixes ocean views with mountain surroundings. No one should get bored flying their drones in this city.

#2. Las Vegas-

When one gets tired of gambling, they can always take a break and go out into the desert to fly their drones. The large open spaces surrounding Las Vegas makes this an attractive city for drone enthusiasts. Being worry free is an asset to flying a drone and helps one to relax and enjoy their hobby a lot more. We recommend that one take the time to go to the open spaces for flying a drone through the city is illegal.

With over 2,000 registered drones, Las Vegas offers drone enthusiasts instant friends, someone whom they have something in common and can talk about their drone flying experiences with, even if the flights maybe a tad on the illegal side.

#3. Albuquerque-

What can we say, the desert scenario offers the safest and best flying arena around. With large open spaces that will not interfere with privacy rights or distract drivers, Albuquerque offers a great scenic place for drone enthusiasts. What can one say, beauty is a great attraction for any hobby and Albuquerque offers great beauty. From mountains to rivers Albuquerque sends a big message to those who like to see good things when they fly.

If one does not want to see their drone involved in an accident then the desert is the place to be as there is enough room for everybody who wants to fly their drones. Being accident free will help keep the costs of drone flying down and help the drone enthusiast enjoy their pastime a lot more.

#4. Raleigh-

While not as picturesque as Albuquerque nor as spacious as Las Vegas, Raleigh has become a hot spot for drone enthusiasts. Maybe it is because a drone company makes its home in Raleigh, making spare parts and accessories more easily available. Or maybe it is because there is a lack of stadiums and airports that would hinder where a drone can be flown. Fewer no fly zones, the better it is to fly a drone.

Whatever the reason, Raleigh has become a favourite spot for drone enthusiasts and we place it at number 4 for because while it lacks in some key attractions, it makes up for it with lots of space to practice the hobby.

#5. San Jose-

Like Raleigh, San Jose lacks airports and stadiums which allows for drone enthusiasts to practice their hobby without fear of violating certain federal regulations. San Jose’s location in Silicon Valley doesn’t hurt either as there are lots of people who have an interest in drones in the city.

Hosting the Drone World Expo helps bring attention to the hobby of drone flying and attracts drone enthusiasts from all over the world. With tips from safety to filming and much more this festival helps the drone enthusiast discover more about their hobby and help them achieve more when using their drones.

San Jose offers what drone enthusiasts need, space to fly and a chance to improve on their hobby. These attributes make this city a very attractive location for drone enthusiasts.

#6. San Antonio-

Coming in at number 6 is this Texas city home to the Alamo. One of the reasons it makes this list is that it offers 10 good locations for any drone enthusiast to fly their drones. From Overlook Park to Tom Slick Park there are 10 great spots which offer amazing scenery and picturesque landscape to entertain the most ardent drone flyer.

Then when one gets tired of flying they can always take a rest at some of the other attractions offered by the city of San Antonio. Not just the Alamo but zoos, botanical gardens and more making this city a location that satisfies the most diverse of entertainment appetites. Not to mention the variety of ethnic restaurants that cater to whatever style of food a drone enthusiast likes to eat.

This variety makes San Antonio as attractive as Las Vegas when it comes to drone flying. The variety of things to do enhances any flying experience and adds to the memories.

#7. New York City-

One would not expect such a large city filled with skyscrapers to offer much to drone enthusiasts but New York City is a surprise. While Manhatten is off limits to drone enthusiasts, New York City does offer some great places for them to fly their drones. There is Calvert Vaux Park, Prospect Park, Liberty State Park, Jones Beach, Pelhem Bay Park, Marine Park as well as 4 more very good sites to fly drones.

We will say that drone enthusiasts need to check local regulations first before attempting to fly their drones in New York City for the boundaries of the no-fly zones can be flexible and subject to the opinions of the investigating authorities. Also regulations may change without notice so if the drone enthusiast does not want to ruin his or her time in new York, they better research first and make sure they have found the right spot to fly their drones.

Don’t let the presence of skyscrapers fool you, New York City has a lot to offer a drone enthusiast along with a great night life when one wants to take a break from flying.

#8. Salt Lake City-

The heart of Mormon country sports some of the most scenic drone flying area around. These sites are not necessarily located in Salt Lake City but are near enough to put this city on the list as one of the best places to fly a drone. Winter or summer Salt Lake City has something to offer any drone flyer.

If you are into lakes or mountains or forests, Salt Lake City is the place to go to fly one’s drone. If you can withstand the cold, then winter flying to see the snow covered mountains is a must on any drone enthusiast’s to do list.

If you want beauty, then like the desert, Salt Lake City has what you want. When you have spare time you can stop by and see the famous Mormon Temple and other historical sites that occupy the city and surrounding region.

#9. Aspen-

If breath taking mountains are your thing, then Aspen is the place you want to be. Winter or summer this city offers great scenery for any drone enthusiast and they will get their money’s worth each and every time they visit. An Autumn visit would bring the beauty of the changing leaves to one’s flying experience.

Then if one gets tired of flying, one can either hike those mountains or ski down them, depending upon the time of year one visits the city. If one does not want to spend a lot of time in the mountains then Denver and its night life, historical sites and other offerings are not far away.

#10 Crystal Coast-

We have mentioned deserts, mountains, parks and even city areas so far but the sea is not to be denied. Crystal Coast is located in North Carolina and brings the drone enthusiast unhindered access to the beautiful coastline of that State.

If you do not like mountains, or the city areas then maybe the sea coast is more to your liking. The long beaches and ocean fronts provide safe flying zones for drones. Having a safe flying zone adds to the enjoyment of the drone flying hobby.

The sea offers its own unique scenery that would appeal to the most sophisticated flyer.

Some final comments

This is our list for the best places drone enthusiasts can fly their drones. Each location offers something special and not every site is for everyone. Each site caters to those who like specific attractions and also some cities provide alternative attractions for those family members who do not want to fly drones. Whether you agree with our list or not, you must agree that the United States offers the drone enthusiast an unlimited supply of great places to fly their drones. Whether they like mountains, deserts, riversides or even coastal locations, the drone flyer is not without great options.

The variety and amount of choice makes this the most difficult part of flying a drone.

© 2019 David Thiessen

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