But beyond the impressive photos and videos with the drone that you surely know you can get on this island, I would like to give you some recommendations that you should put into practice before flying your drone in Mallorca.
In order for you to fly calmly and normally in the largest of the Balearic Islands, I will tell you a little about the current drone regulations in Spain, as there is a legal framework that you need to be aware of in order to fly with safe and within the law both for Mallorca and the rest of Spain; and restricted areas.
General drone regulations in Spain
As far as the legal framework is concerned, the State Aviation Safety Agency (AESA) is the body in charge of establishing regulations for the use of drones in Spain.
These regulations are set out in Royal Decree 1036/2017, which establishes the operating conditions applicable to drones.
Before flying your drone in Mallorca (and this also applies to any place in Spain) you need to know what are the requirements to fly a drone, which I will summarize below:
- Registration of the drone with AESA and correct drone operator registration if required.
- Pilot’s license, essential depending on the type of drone you fly and the type of operation.
- Liability insurance to cover damages to third parties. Coverdrone is the most economical drone insurance I have found for both recreational and professional drones.
- Knowing the flight rules
- To understand the ENAIRE map in order to know the different existing flight zones.
Restricted flying areas in Mallorca
Once you are clear about the requirements to fly a drone, the next step is to check the area where you want to operate (fly) on the Enaire Drones map. If you don’t know how to use it, in my article about where you can fly a drone in the Spanish territory I tell you about it.
When checking the area where you are going to develop the activity, you will find yourself either in a “grey zone” (free for drone flight), or you will encounter other scenarios. Scenarios that may include the following:
Airports and airfields
To fly in one that is under the domains of the safety radius of a airportor, in other words, in a CTR zone (controlled traffic region), you will need to comply with a series of documentation that I talk about in my article in my article “requirements to fly a drone”.
To fly in the aerodromes it will be enough with a coordination, firstly, written through documents that the aerodromes themselves have prepared, and the day of the flight, through email or phone call to let you know that you are ready to start with the operation. You will be informed in advance by the aerodrome. In Mallorca you will find 3 airfields:
- Manacor Aerodrome (Petra-Pep Mercader)
- Pollença Military Aerodrome
- Binissalem Aerodrome
Protected Natural Areas
Mallorca has several protected natural areas, such as the Natural Park of s’Albufera, the Es Trenc salt flats in Campos, or the Sierra de Tramuntana. In these areas, drone flight is restricted and controlled to protect biodiversity and avoid possible disturbance to the wildlife that inhabits them.
To fly in an ENP, regardless of the weight of your drone, you must:
- Requesting a flight permit through an application through registration and it will take no less than 30 working days to be resolved, so if you want to fly in an ENP, I recommend you to plan your flight with time.
- You will need to submit an application for activities in protected natural areas.
- A general model of declaration of good practices in natural protected areas (ENP).
- Flight plan.
Finally, you must submit all the required documentation by registration.
If you do not have any flight ban, you will most likely be granted the flight, being free for recreational flights, and paid for professional flights.
Similar in nature to the ENPs, you will find special bird protection areas (ZEPA). To be able to fly in these zones, you will have to contact the organization in question and request a flight permit, which will be granted depending on the zone and the time of the year you want to fly.
If there are species that are in breeding season, for example, you will surely be denied, but if not, there will be no problem in approving your request and you will be able to fly.
Areas restricted to photographic flight
These areas are more common in the area of the Sierra de Tramuntana, and less, but increasingly in some areas of central Mallorca.
NOTAMs (notice to airmen or mission) are also frequent, mostly of a military nature for flight practice and also for particular airspace reservations. In my experience, where I have encountered them the most has been in the Formentor area, near the Faro de Formentor area.
Recommended areas for flying in Mallorca
Remember to check the possible flight restrictions on the Enaire Drones map.
- Sierra de Tramuntana: Aunque parte de esta zona está protegida (ya te he comentado cómo proceder), hay áreas donde el vuelo está permitido. Es esencial consultar mapas específicos y siempre volar con precaución.
- Cap de Formentor
- Es Colomer Viewpoint
- Sa Calobra
- El Toro
- Sant Elm, in Andratx, in front of the Dragonera island.
- Sa Foradada
- Puig de Santa Magdalena
- Cabo Blanco Lighthouse
- Beaches and coves: While many popular beaches can be crowded, there are lesser-known coves that allow for spectacular catches. It is always vital to fly early or late in the day to avoid crowds, and on summer days to avoid the harsh light of the middle of the day.
The beaches in the east of Mallorca are usually free of restrictions.
Privacy and respect for residents
It is easy to fly a drone in towns and villages in Mallorca if you have a drone under 250 grams, as these are drones that can be flown without a licence. Even if you can fly without the need for permits and licences in these environments, you must be clear about the rules and restrictions for flying a drone, because it also has them.
Drone flying must not invade people’s privacy. It is illegal and unethical to fly over private property or to film people without their consent.
- Planning: Before flying, research the area, consult maps and check weather conditions. An interesting app for this is UAV Forecast or Windy.
- Batteries and equipment: Mallorca has several areas where electricity is not easily accessible. If you plan to fly in remote areas, take extra batteries and make sure all your equipment is in perfect condition.
- Contacting the local authorities: If you have any doubts about where you can fly, it is advisable to contact the local authorities or the EASA delegation in the Balearic Islands. Or you can consult me too, I’m sure I’ll solve your question first.
I hope this detailed article meets your expectations. If there are specific areas where you would like me to go into more depth or any other adjustments, please let me know. I’m here to help you!