Põltsamaa and Tartu

On August 8, 2020, I went to Tartu. The main reason was the wish to take pictures of Tartu with a drone.

Tartu is located in controlled airspace (due to the airport). In order to fly there while working at the airport, you must have a permit to fly for a specific period of time. Applying for a permit to fly is not a difficult task. I learned from NOTAM that on August 8 the airport would be closed and therefore no permit to fly was required.

Itinerary was simple: Tallinn – Põltsamaa – Tartu – Tallinn.


I arrived at Põltsamaa at noon. The weather was beautiful. There were plans to make drone pictures of Põltsamaa fortress and church.

I let the drone fly and about 20 minutes of adventure in the air began. I took pictures of the fortress and the church, but also general views of the town. There was a lot to capture, so I brought the drone back in the very last minutes before the battery was completely discharged.


The plan was to go and take pictures of three different places in Tartu.

1. The Estonian National Museum (ERM) and its immediate surroundings
2. Turu (market) bridge and its surroundings
3. Toomemägi hill

When I reached ERM, the car’s thermometer showed 28° C. In addition, the sun was blazing. I quickly sought for a tree for shade and fly a drone. Fortunately, I didn’t have to go far. There was also a nice bench. The drone took flight and was in the air for about 20 minutes. I took pictures of the front and back of the ERM, the “upside down” house and the views of the city center.

Next I drove to the parking lot near the Turu (market) bridge. There I took pictures with a drone of the bridge, the Tigutorn building, AHHAA Center and Pläsku building. The temperature was still quite insane, so you had to look for shade at all costs. It wasn’t that easy. The nearest trees were conquered by jackdaws who produced droppings. In addition, their feathers fell from the tree like tree leaves in autumn. The second shady place was under the Turu bridge, but there the drone did not want to keep in touch with the remote control. So it was quite a task to find the right place.

First, the Turu bridge in photographs.

I then flew the drone to Tigutorn and the AHHAA center. I thought that such flying there would not be very successful, because there were a lot of radio jammers, but it didn’t cause many problems.

Next came Pläsku. As the sun was shining from the direction of the department store, the drone had to be flown to the department store to take a picture. This also did not cause any connection problems.

The trip continued to the Emajõgi river in Supilinna district. It was all summery there: people were swimming, boats and ships were sailing. I also took a few shots from there.

I then went to take pictures of some other interesting places in the Karlova district.

Finally, the road took me to Toomemägi hill. First I took a short walk to Vallikraavi street and from there to St. Mary’s Church. The latter had recently acquired a lot of graffiti. There is no information on whether this was done with or without the consent of the owners.

To my pleasant surprise, the Vallikraavi gate pavilion had received a new life. There is now an ULA bar. The building has been beautifully tidied up.

When everything had been photographed there, I went back to Toomemägi. There were models of various buildings in different corners of the park.

The time for flying the drone had arrived again. I flew it to St. John’s Church and Town Hall. The observatory, the old anatomical building and the Dome Cathedral on Toomemägi were captured in pictures.

In total, the drone flew about 11 km that day.



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