The northernmost state on the East Coast, Maine features a diverse variety of amazing subjects for aerial photography. Maine has everything from miles of rocky coastlines on the Atlantic Ocean, to majestic peaks of the Appalachian Mountains, to energetic city scenes in Portland. The diverse landscapes and stunning scenery attract over 36 million visitors each year, with that number rising by the millions each year. One of the unique things about this state is the year round attraction. In the fall, visitors flock to Maine to see the gorgeous fall foliage, with some of the most vibrant colored trees in the country. In the winter, the ski resorts open up bringing life to the mountain communities. And spring and summer is the perfect time to fish, hike, canoe, or explore the beautiful nature in Maine. Unlike other New England states that slow down in the winter, Maine is full of life year round. This stunning state has so much to offer aerial photographers and it and transforms with every season.
One of the biggest tourist attractions in Maine is Acadia National Park. This 47,000 acre national park contains 7 peaks above 1,000 ft, 158 miles of hiking trails, and stunning scenery year-round. Although drone photography is not allowed in the park itself, the beautiful area has several wonderful locations nearby where you can fly and capture photos of the park in the distance. As always, it’s usually a good idea to bring along a DSLR camera or a DJI Osmo to photograph scenery you might otherwise miss. Located southwest of Bar Harbor, Acadia National Park covers most of Mount Desert Island. There is an abundance of sights to photograph in this park, from lakes to beaches to mountains, including Cadillac Mountain, Jordan Pond, Sand Beach, Somes Sound, and Beehive Trail. Besides the national park, the town of Bar Harbor, Maine has a lot to offer. Known as the “Gateway to Acadia National Park,” this town is the perfect place to retreat to after a long day of flying and exploring. Bar Harbor contains plenty of quaint hotels, boutiques, and restaurants, including many places where you can taste a real Maine lobster. This town also provides access to Bar Island, which is only accessible by the Bar Island Land Bridge. This unique land structure is only accessible at low tide, so be sure to plan ahead so that you do not get stuck on the island! And if you are feeling even more adventurous, try one of the Acadia Air Tours. These aerial tours of the national park offer a unique perspective with breathtaking views. Experienced pilots fly you and a friend around the national park and provide information about the various land and water features from the sky.
While Maine is most commonly recognized for its beautiful nature and scenery, it does not lack the excitement of major cities. While Portland, Maine, is the most populous city in the state, and is home to more than one third of Maine’s total population, this city is still quaint compared to other major cities in the United States. Most of Portland is located within “Class C” airspace, so you will need permission from the FAA before you can launch your drone into the air. FAA approval can occasionally take some time, but it is absolutely worth it. Old Port is a district in Portland known for its cobblestone streets and brick buildings, remaining relatively unchanged since the city was first built. While this city contains all of the convenience and excitement of a major city, you do not have to go very far to be reminded of the natural beauty of Maine. A sharp contrast to the urban landscape, on the eastern coast of Portland, the Eastern Promenade is a park that runs parallel to the water, providing beautiful ocean views along a paved trail. And about 5 miles south of Portland is one of the most popular beaches in Maine, Crescent Beach State Park. Aptly named, this mile-long beach is shaped like a crescent moon. In the summer, you will surely encounter other drone pilots capturing its sunny beauty. This beach is ideal for sunbathing, swimming, and kayaking, and in the winter, this area contains many cross-country skiing trails. Located just south of the city is Cape Elizabeth, home to Portland Head Lighthouse, one of New England’s most iconic lighthouses. Completed in 1791, this lighthouse is the oldest lighthouse in Maine, and watches over Portland Harbor.
Whether you are in the urban city of Portland or the preserved land of Acadia National Park, the naturally photogenic beauty of Maine is everywhere. From fall foliage in the forest, to summer sun at the beach, to winter snow in the mountains, Maine offers abundant aerial drone photography opportunities with each season. The untouched magnificence of the landscape of this state is is unparalleled.
We’d like to give a special thanks to Paul Coco for photographing and filming the amazing imagery found here. If you are interested in flying for dronegenuity, you can learn more about our drone pilot jobs, check out some of our drone photography tutorials, or simply follow dronegenuity on our social media channels: YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Please consider subscribing to our mailing list for regular updates!