5 Tips to Find the Best Place to Fly FPV Drone

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When you’re location scouting and trying to find a great place for drone photos and videos, don’t waste your time flying your drone around and using up the battery to find that spot; don’t waste your time driving around trying to find that spot, either.

Stay on this page!

In this article, I’ll share my top five steps for efficient drone location scouting, ensuring you get the most out of your flying experience without wasting precious travel time.

1. Utilize Google Maps

Google Maps can be a powerful tool for location scouting.

While the standard view may not offer much insight, switching to the satellite view reveals a treasure trove of valuable information. Zooming in, you can pinpoint specific locations, such as parking lots or landmarks, that are ideal for flying your drone.

For example, when I was in Dana Point, California, I used Google Maps’ satellite view to discover not only a cool harbor but also two piers that offered fantastic drone photography opportunities.

2. Dive deeper with Google Earth

Google Earth isn’t just an app; it’s your personal reconnaissance satellite! It allows you to explore locations with greater detail, giving you a better understanding of the area’s layout and potential photo-worthy spots.

Here’s an example: A new river boardwalk is nearby, and I was like, “Is that a cool place to go and fly my drone?” As I turned on Google Earth, I could dive in a bit deeper to find things like this cool hexagon in the area. I might be able to get a cool shot from that or the way the boardwalk is laid out; I might get a perfect photo of me lying down on the boardwalk.

3. Seek inspiration on Instagram

Instagram is a goldmine of inspiration for drone photographers.

You can discover stunning shots captured by other drone enthusiasts by searching hashtags related to your destination, such as #dronetulum. These images will spark your creativity and provide valuable information about where those fantastic shots were taken. Once you find a spot that catches your eye, you can add it to your location scouting list.

Remember, successful location scouting isn’t just about discovery but diligent preparation and research.

4. Check drone maps for fly zones

Location scouting isn’t just about finding beautiful places; it’s also about ensuring you can legally fly your drone there. To avoid any legal troubles or safety issues, consult drone maps or apps that show no-fly zones, restricted areas, and airspace regulations.

This step is crucial for being a responsible and law-abiding drone pilot.

5. Monitor weather conditions

The success of your drone photography largely depends on weather conditions.

I like to use just the standard Weather Channel app, and I pay for the premium version of it. I love to look at it hourly. Looking at the entire day isn’t help you; you might have rain coming in during different parts of the day.

Cloudy or rainy weather can adversely affect the quality of your shots, so it’s essential to keep tabs on the weather forecast before heading out to fly your drone.

I also like to look at the times for sunrise and sunset, making sure I’m out there at least an hour beforehand to get those great shots in the perfect lighting.


1. Do I need special permission to fly a drone in certain areas? 

Yes, some locations have restrictions on drone flights. It’s crucial to check the drone maps and regulations for the area you plan to fly in. In some cases, you may need a waiver or special permission to operate a drone.

2. Can I fly my drone during inclement weather? 

Flying a drone in bad weather situations, such as strong winds, heavy rain, or low visibility, is generally not advisable. Flying in such situations can compromise your drone’s stability and lead to subpar footage.

3. Is drone location scouting time-consuming? 

With the right tools and techniques, location scouting can be efficient and relatively quick. Utilizing Google Maps, Google Earth, and Instagram can streamline the process and help you find captivating locations faster.

4. Are there any no-fly zones that I should be aware of? 

Certain areas, such as airports, military bases, and national parks, are designated as no-fly zones due to safety and privacy concerns. Make sure to check the drone maps and local regulations to avoid flying in restricted areas.

5. What’s the best time of day to fly a drone for the best lighting? 

The golden hour, which occurs during the hour after sunrise and the hour before sunset, achieves the most beautiful and flattering natural lighting for drone photography. Shooting during this time can elevate the quality of your aerial shots.

Final words

Efficient drone location scouting is a game-changer for travel creators and drone enthusiasts alike.

So, next time you plan a drone photography adventure, remember these five steps to make the most of your location scouting process.

Happy droning!

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Written By Richard Hargrave

Hi I'm Richard. Since 2018, I've found my calling in the boundless sky, maneuvering everything from mini quadcopters to remote-controlled planes. Today, my favorite pastime is creating stunning commercial videos with FPV drones. I'm a drone instructor by trade, writer by passion.

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