Beaches, parks and lakes can provide excellent locations to enjoy flying your drone, and can provide settings for stunning photos and videos.
However, there are three key things you need to actively check before you fly at these locations:
Consent: Beaches and lakes can be privately owned, whereas parks are generally owned/administered by a local authority. Additionally, any of these places may be designated a Protected Area under the administration of DoC or a local authority. It is vital that you gain consent from the property owner or administering authority before flight. Some local authorities may have policies where blanket permission is given in some parks – check their websites for details. Beaches and lakes may have unoccupied water vessels – if you want to fly over these you will also need permission from the owner.
Airspace: Any of these places may be in controlled airspace, within 4km of an aerodrome, or even in a no-fly zone. If this is the case, you will need to adhere to the restrictions of that airspace. Check the AirShare map(external link) to find the airspace, and see Intro to 101 Rules for flight near aerodromes, Controlled Airspace and No-Fly Zones sections of the CAA website to find out more.
People: Beaches, parks and lakes draw lots and lots of people. Before you fly over anyone, including people in a water vessel, you will need their consent. At crowded locations this is almost certainly impractical, so just avoid flying over anyone.