This photo is an absolutely stunning view of a highway in Romania. It winds its way through a gorgeous forest. The drone pilot must have captured the image during the peak time in Autumn, because the red, orange, and golden leaves are picture-perfect (pun fully intended!). And to think, this same shot would have cost thousands of dollars and a helicopter pilot not so long ago.
Even NASA is using drone technology in the newest rovers they’re building to put on the surface of Mars. While the image below may look like a captured photo of a highway running across the surface of the Red Planet, it’s actually a remote highway in Arizona. Imagine driving along this road, taking in the beauty, and being able to pull over, set up your drone, and snag an amazing shot like this. Ain’t technology grand?
Where No Man Has Gone Before
One of the biggest benefits of using drones is that they allow you to capture photos in areas that are just too risky to send a human photographer. Consider the photo below. No photographer in their right mind would have gotten this close to a volcanic eruption in Iceland. Even if they weren’t in their right mind, they wouldn’t be able to get the kind of aerial shot that this drone is capturing.
It can be tricky to capture really epic shots in heavily populated urban areas. In the U.S., Federal Aviation rules limit much of the flying that can be done in major cities. However, rogue drone pilots still manage to capture some really amazing images, even if it’s not always legal. We’re not exactly sure what China’s aviation laws are, but this is one great shot of a busy intersection in Shanghai.
Words can hardly express how amazing this photo is. This is the Sagrat Cor Church in Barcelona, Spain. It’s perched high up on a hill in the city, and this photographer managed to hit the site when a fine mist was swirling around the façade. The incredible result speaks for itself. This one is absolutely stunning!
When most of us think of abandoned, dilapidated buildings we probably don’t picture anything that could be even remotely called photogenic. However, some places are more beautiful without humans around than with. This abandoned college in the little-known country of Abkhazia looks as if it’s being reclaimed by Mother Nature. Without drones, we likely never would have seen this structure like this.
A Home In The Clouds
Many of us can relate to wanting to live in a place where you don’t have many neighbors. This Georgian Monk takes that concept to a whole new level! The church pictured below sits atop the Katskhi Pillar in Western Georgia, nearly 140 feet above the surrounding village. They say isolation is important when meditating. The solitary monk who lives here has that covered, we’d say.
A Stunning Waterfall
Waterfalls are an obvious choice when it comes for subjects to photograph using drones. There are plenty of amazing options to pick from all over the world, but Norway’s Mardalsfossen—one of the highest waterfalls in Europe—is one of the most gorgeous on the planet. The falls are drop nearly 1,200 feet, but this drone image makes it look as if the falls disappear in an infinite sea of clouds.
Humans accomplish some pretty amazing feats, and drone technology is allowing us to capture some of those feats like never before. Take the photo below, for instance. The diver pictured is the Guinness World Record holder for waterfall diving, and with the help of a drone, this image of him jumping off the top of the falls on the Yellow River in China is forever preserved.
The monk in Georgia had a pretty good handle on isolation, but whoever lives in this little house in the middle of Alexandria Bay, which lies between Canada and New York, is serious about keeping solicitors away! As you can see, the drone managed to capture this photo in Fall, whenever the small island and home is a colorful oasis in the middle of a giant expanse of water.
They Work Hard For The Money
Talk about an image that only a drone could capture! These folks make their living by rappelling down the sides of skyscrapers and cleaning windows. Now their normally lonely workday is captured forever in this amazing photo. We especially like how the skyscape and surrounding city of Moscow are captured in the reflection of the building.
Painting Or Photo?
This beautiful aerial shot is so surreal it could be a Monet painting. The photo was taken in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam in 2017. That same year, at the International Drone Photography Contest, this photo took second place out of a field of almost 8,000 total entries. To see the other winners from last year’s contest, visit the website here.
Not All Is As It Seems
The photo below appears to show a family sitting in a boat in the middle of a desert landscape. However, this drone actually captured a picture of a family sitting in a boat on an actual lake. The setting is Burke Lake in Virginia. You could stare for hours at this photo trying to figure it out, and it never would have been possible without drone technology.
An amazing example of architecture and landscaping, this image captures a Dutch fort, located in a small town in the eastern part of Holland. The fort is no longer in use, so the site has been turned into a historical museum. The drone image shows how meticulously the grounds were laid out and lined with thick forest.
The Lotus Temple
India is a treasure trove of architectural marvels. The image below was captured by a drone hovering around the Lotus Temple in a remote part of Delhi. The lotus flower is very symbolic, and this photo shows how the architect captured the flower’s beauty in the design of the structure. It’s now against the law to fly drones in this area, so we’re lucky to have gotten this image when we did.
Distant Planet Or Actual Aerial Photo?
This is another example of just how alien an aerial photo can look to us. In what appears to be a beautiful painting, award-winning drone photographer Max Foster was able to capture the Delta River in Iceland from around 1,500 feet. While it looks as if the photo was taken above the surface of Neptune, it actually shows that some parts of our own home planet are still almost too beautiful for words.
The Most Heavily Populated City In The Western Hemisphere
This incredible aerial photo shows a portion of Mexico City. With 21 million people crammed within its borders, Mexico City is the most heavily populated city in the Western Hemisphere. This drone image shows the thousands of homes that are crammed amongst the hills of the busy city. Remember this photo the next time you get frustrated with your morning commute to work!
Saudi Arabian Traffic Jam
This spectacular image was captured with a drone piloted by Abdullah Alnassar high above the red dunes in Saudi Arabia. The white camels pictured below are likely trekking through the desert in search of water. It takes a second or two for your eyes to process it, but what impresses us most about his photo are the shadows of the animals in the dunes above them.
A Sea Of Ducks
Many Asian farmers raise thousands of ducks so they can harvest their meat and feathers—their main source of income. This drone was able to capture this incredible shot of a farmer in Vietnam crossing his property as the ducks part for him. A closer inspection reveals the illusion of the man walking on water!
If you thought that the only thing you’d see in Iceland is ice you’d be sorely mistaken! This drone image shows just how gorgeous the country’s landscape actually is. The photo was captured at just the right time of day to show the epic mountains and crystal blue rivers cutting through the countryside. This is the kind of stuff drones were meant for!
The town pictured below is Santa Maddalena in Italy. It’s hard to pick which part is the most beautiful. The sun shining on mountains in the distant is practically divine while the colorful landscape around the small town is almost too much to handle. One thing is for sure, if it weren’t for drone technology we likely never would have seen either.
The Dead Sea Isn’t Dead Yet
Have you ever seen water this blue? Tzvika Stein is a drone photographer based out of Tel Aviv, and we can thank him for the beautiful photo below. The Dead Sea is a threatened body of water, and Stein uses images like this to help raise awareness regarding the future of this amazing word wonder. We’d hate to see the opportunity to capture images like this disappear.
Another Amazing Waterfall
When two major river systems meet, the result is sure to be of epic proportions. That’s certainly the case for the Gallinas and Santa Maria Rivers in Mexico. The result of their converging is a 900-foot-wide waterfall known as Cascada de Tamul. While the best possible view is by using a drone, a close second is to paddle upstream in a canoe and watch the gorgeous turquoise water plunge over the cliffs.
Speaking Of Wonders Of The World
The Taj Mahal in India is one of the world’s 7 Great Wonders. It’s no surprise that drone photographers flock to the area to capture never-before-seen views of the architectural landmark. The photo below shows why it is worth the effort to get there and get your drone airborne! The Taj Mahal is a beacon for spiritual stillness and peace, and this photo captures that essence beautifully.
Aerial photography isn’t new—helicopters have been used for many years to capture aerial images. However, helicopters are limited by how low they can fly and how close they can get to certain objects. Drones are able to fly much lower and get much closer to subjects, providing an all-new look at things that we might now have thought as “beautiful” in the past. For instance, this farmer’s field.
A Unique Perspective
Drones have given us the opportunity to see unknown things for the first time, but they’ve also given us the opportunity to see famous things in a new way. Take, for instance, the earthwork sculpture called Spiral Jetty. This natural creation was made by Robert Smithson back in 1970, so it’s been around for a while now. However, new drone images allow us to see the sculpture like never before.
Blue Lobster Farms Of Vietnam
This aerial photo captures a perfect example of Mother Nature and Man working side-by-side. The photo was taken over the beautiful turquoise waters of Vietnam’s Phu Yen province, which is home to many lobster breeding farms. Photos like this prove that more remote areas of the world have just as much amazing material to photo as the most bustling cities.
For years, many outdoor photographers have traveled to the far corners of the world to capture images of polar bears (sometimes putting themselves at great risk to capture a shot!). Now, drone technology allows photographers to capture images like the one below, previously only available if you happened to know a crazy arctic helicopter pilot. Plus, a noisy chopper would have likely scared this big guy off before a photographer had the chance to catch him “mid-hop.”
2016’s First Prize Winner
This image took the top prize home at the 2016 International Drone Footage Photography Awards. The climber pictured was heading up a chimney on a mountain in Denmark. This is a perfect example of drone usage by one of the technology’s favorite followers—extreme sportsmen! Rock climbing, surfing, race car driving, and even running with the bulls have all been captured with drone images.
India’s Poverty Epidemic In One Photo
This image shows Dharavi, one of India’s largest slums. While the country is home to more billionaires than any other in the world, it also has a serious poverty epidemic. The slum pictured below is estimated to house a million residents. While drones certainly capture much of the beauty our planet has to offer, they can also capture the uglier side of humanity.