Are Drones Allowed In Santorini

Are Drones Allowed In Santorini?

In the world of photography and videography, drones have revolutionized the way we capture and perceive our surroundings.

They offer a unique perspective, allowing us to view the world from a bird’s eye view.

However, with this technological advancement comes the need for regulation, especially in tourist hotspots like Santorini, Greece. This article aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the drone laws in Santorini.

Background Information

Drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), have been around for several decades, primarily used in military operations.

However, with the advent of more compact and affordable models, drones have become increasingly popular for recreational and commercial use, especially in photography and videography.

Drone Laws in Greece

In Greece, drone usage is regulated by the Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority (HCAA). The laws are designed to ensure the safety of all airspace users and people on the ground.

Some of the general rules include not flying above 400 feet, always maintaining visual contact with the drone, and not flying over people or private property without permission.

Drone Laws in Santorini

Santorini, known for its stunning sunsets and iconic blue-domed churches, has specific regulations regarding drone usage.

Due to the island’s high volume of tourists and the need to preserve its historical sites, drone flights are generally prohibited without a special permit.

This rule is in place to prevent accidents, protect privacy, and maintain the tranquil atmosphere that Santorini is famous for.

Consequences of Violating Drone Laws in Santorini

Violating drone laws in Santorini can lead to severe consequences. These can range from hefty fines to potential jail time, depending on the severity of the violation.

Moreover, illegal drone operations can lead to the confiscation of drone equipment.

How to Legally Operate a Drone in Santorini

To legally operate a drone in Santorini, you must apply for a special permit from the HCAA. This involves providing detailed information about the planned flight, including the purpose, date, time, and location.

It’s also crucial to respect the rules of drone flying, such as not flying near crowds or historical sites and always maintaining visual contact with the drone.

Case Studies

There have been instances where drone operators have faced penalties for violating the laws. For example, in 2018, a tourist was fined €1,000 for flying a drone over the town of Oia without a permit. On the other hand, there are also examples of legal drone usage in Santorini.

Several professional photographers and filmmakers have obtained the necessary permits to capture the island’s beauty from above, resulting in breathtaking footage that respects local regulations.


Understanding and adhering to drone laws in Santorini is crucial for anyone planning to operate a drone on the island.

While the regulations may seem strict, they are in place to ensure the safety and privacy of everyone, as well as to preserve the unique charm and tranquility of Santorini.

As drone technology continues to evolve, it’s essential for operators to stay informed about the laws and respect the places they are visiting.

Last Updated on June 26, 2023

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