Want to create a sheltered place in your garden or backyard from where you can admire the view and maybe hang out with friends? How about a gazebo?
In this article, we’ll share with you gazebo ideas to inspire you to add one to your garden. But first, though, let’s fully understand what this structure is and what it does and explore a few different gazebo types.
What Is a Gazebo?
Technically speaking, a gazebo is an isolated structure with a roof and open sides. The shape of the structure can of course vary.
The main purpose of this structure is to provide a nice view of the surroundings (hence its name) while at the same time offering shade or shelter.
Today, gazebos are often used to create a place where you can relax outside with your friends or family. They also serve an ornamental purpose, as you’ll see in the examples below.
Good to know: These decorative structures are not only beautiful but also functional. Because of their popularity, you can now buy them as completely assembled pre-fabricated structures. There are a lot of styles to choose from!
Most traditional gazebos have a tiered roof. This makes them look more attractive and adds a perfect touch to the structure.
Another element that can make them look appealing is the scalloped roof shingles. These decorative roof tiles have a classic design and add style and texture to the structure.
Tip: If you want to break away from traditional styles, you can create a unique and eye-catching design by using tree branches or antiquated barn wood.
Types of Gazebo Designs
Gazebos come in different shapes such as round, oblong, rectangular, square, hexagonal, or octagonal. They also come in a variety of designs.
The most common ones include the following.
This is a rounded shaped structured that originated in Europe. One of its unique features is the domed roof.
Commonly, it has six or eight sides but it can also have an oval or rectangular shape. It has open sides, allowing the fresh air to enter into the place.
This is an Asian-inspired classic design that is typically made of wood with a tiled roof. It’s easy to spot because of its clear Eastern influences.
Another classic design, this one features various decorative elements to make it look elegant; usually made of wood or metal.
This style is different from the others since it does not offer as much shade but is rather used as a decorative element. It’s not as popular today as it used to be, which we think makes it all the more special.
What Are Gazebos Made From?
Since a gazebo is designed as an outdoor structure, it’s usually constructed from a durable weather-resistant material. Most are made of wood, metal, or vinyl.
- Metal gazebos are usually fabricated with steel or aluminum. They can be painted any color to match your current structures and outdoor elements.
- Wood gazebos look more natural especially when placed in the garden. They are commonly made from hardwoods such as redwood and cedar. They can also be made from bamboo, which is durable and flexible.
- Vinyl gazebos are usually embossed to look like wood, stone, or brick. They can also be painted to look like steel or other metals. They tend to be lightweight and require less maintenance than those made from wood.
40 Garden Gazebo Ideas
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s explore together different designs and styles. Use these for inspiration.
You can recreate them in your garden or borrow elements from them and adapt them to your own design. Your choice, really. Don’t shy away from getting creative!
1. Wooden Lattice Gazebo
Our list kicks off with a pavilion type gazebo made of natural teakwood. The floor is made of reclaimed cut logs, making it economical and eco-friendly too. We think it’s awesome!
2. Redwood Gazebo
This one is made entirely of redwood, one of the most reliable woods for landscaping timber projects. Like in the example below, you can place it in the open to create a sense of space around it.
3. Rock Gazebo
The floors and columns are all stone, making this one of the most weather-resistant entries on our list. It also includes stone stairs and raised gardening beds on the side. We love it!
4. Lakeside Pavilion
This lakeside wooden pavilion creates a perfect romantic setting all warm seasons as well as in the fall. It’s entirely made of teakwood but you can experiment with other woods, too.
5. Garden Gazebo
You can always surround your garden gazebo with flowers and vines if you don’t want to leave it open. You can do this with climbing plants like hydrangea or ivy without walling it in.
6. Simple Asian Pagoda
This is such a lovely place for meditation. Regardless, if it does not have too many details, yet it blends well with its setting. Aim for a simple, airy design if you want to immerse yourself in the surrounding greenery.
7. Large Elegant Pavilion
This is a white Victorian type with two octagonal roofs. Surrounded by well-trimmed shrubs and colorful flowers as it is, it makes for a lovely and fragrant place. Ideal for larger gatherings and events.
8. Small Tiered Pagoda
This cutie can easily transform your garden. It has a detailed yet not overly complicated design and looks impressive in off-white.
9. Dome Structured Gazebo
This is a splendid rotunda placed near a man-made pond and surrounded by trees. The eight columns that support its structure lend it elegance and grace.
10. Resort Gazebo
This is an environment-friendly choice that is made of mostly indigenous or recycled material. It’s perfect if you want to bring a tropical look to your garden–and get a lot of shine during the summer!
11. Vine Gazebo
This pergola blends harmoniously with its surroundings. The roof is made of creeping vines, giving it a very organic look. It’s one of our favorites!
12. Backyard Gazebo
The structure is entirely built of wood while the roof is made of green hexagonal tiles. You can easily adapt it to your backyard and add or remove details from it according to your taste (and budget!).
13. Wedding Gazebo
This is a beautiful white structure constructed made from durable metal. The roof is made of asphalt tiles. Adapt it to your garden or backyard so you can use it every day, not just for weddings!
14. Mystical Gazebo
The name for this one may be a bit poltergeist but we couldn’t help it. It has a classic design and uses columns for support. We love the somewhat antiquated look and how it’s smothered on all sides by rampant vegetation.
15. Gothic-Inspired Gazebo
Think minimalist Gothic rather than in-your-face Gothic. This one’s placed at the end of the pathway, which easily makes it a point of interest. It adds both personality and functionality to its setting.
16. Floating Gazebo
An oceanfront with an elevated floor–talking about dream pavillions! This one has open sides and no railings, making it very accessible to anyone. If you got a swimming pool in your garden, consider recreating this style–it would look great!
17. Lighted Pavilion with Pillars
This is a perfect place to spend your night with friends. It has open sides so you can embrace the cold breeze. Garden lights can add to the appeal of your gazebo, so think of ways you can integrate them.
18. Aluminum Pavilion
This is a more budget-friendly choice that uses a canvas canopy. The structure is made of sturdy aluminum. Go for it if you need a simple structure that provides shade and protection against rain.
19. Log Cabin Gazebo
This one looks great in winter but it’s a dependable choice in most other seasons, provided you use good quality wood. It offers excellent air circulation and has a charming, rustic look about it.
20. Rustic Gazebo
Talking of rustic structures, if you want to stay away from traditional designs, this could be the perfect option. You need to be handy with a saw and other tools to pull this one off, though.
21. Custom Rock Pavilion
A unique gazebo that is made of stone instead of wood. The creeping flowers make it more colorful. It’s super airy and just perfect for a rock garden.
22. Secret Garden Gazebo
Most gazebos are placed in the middle of the yard like in the image below. But this one would look great tucked away in a secret garden, too. You could decorate with hanging plants and flowers.
23. Beach Style Hut
This one looks lovely at the center of the sea, surrounded by turquoise waters. But you can adapt the design and place it next to your swimming pool. Instead of the walkway, you can have a wooden foothpath or deck.
24. Lightweight Rustic Gazebo with Curtains
Curtains can add an artistic touch to your structure. More than that, they can provide shade and even keep the mosquitos at bay. So, how about an Oriental, baldachin-like effect?
25. Screened Corner Gazebo
A screened gazebo is a perfect hiding place and provides protection against bugs. This one’s small but practical and can double up as storage space–though you may still want to explore our garden storage solutions.
26. Pointed Roof Pagoda
We love the pointed roof of this structure. It sits beside a pool which is very relaxing. It would look amazing next to a fairy garden, don’t you think?
27. Large Pavilion with Pool
A large gazebo with a large hot tub built into it. Admittedly, this is one of the more costly ideas on our list. But just imagine how relaxing this combo would be!
28. Custom Gazebo
Simple is the best way to go sometimes, regardless of your budget. Made mostly from natural materials, this structure integrates beautifully into a fresh natural garden.
29. Small Gazebo
Don’t have all that much space in your garden? No problem! Here’s a small structure you can easily fit into just about any garden. It’s intimate and just great for a couple or small family.
30. Wrought Iron Metal Gazebo
Wrought iron can be a great material for garden structures. Here’s an example to prove the point. In this image, the creeping vines are used to provide natural roofing. The atmosphere inside is just amazing!
31. Raised Wooden Pagoda
Raising your wooden gazebo well above the surface of the soil can protect it from flood–if you have a lake or pond nearby. It can also turn it into a garden centerpiece. We love the casual elegance of this structure.
32. Grill Pavilion with Wooden Deck
This is a great place for your outdoor barbecue. It’s also one of the most affordable ideas on our list, one which you can easily adapt to your taste. The wooden deck makes all the difference.
33. Creative Teapot Gazebo
When we said “creative” we weren’t joking! Here’s an awesome teapot gazebo that looks as if it’s come straight from the Arabian Nights stories. Who knows, yours might be even more fantastic than this one?
34. Bungalow Garden Hut
Covering three sides of your gazebo can turn it into a bungalow-like structure like in the image below. Make sure to install some lights to make it fun to use in the evening and at night.
35. Bell Shaped Gazebo
One of the most striking entries, on this list, this one has a wonderful bell-shaped roof which gives it a timeless-look. Make your own special by getting creative with the roof and not settling for something average.
36. Chinese Gazebo
Sturdy and resilient this design can weather the seasons and remain a key feature in your garden. It’s one of the heavier designs on this list, so you will need help to build this one (and a nice budget!).
37. Patio Summer Bungalow
Add flair to your garden with this flamboyant party-ready structure. It’s spacious and airy, making it great for balmy summer evenings with friends. The oversized roof is worth every penny.
38. Thatched Garden Hut
Interested in alternative materials? Use thatch as an alternative roofing material to give your structure an exotic feel. Like inn the example below, looks great next to green hedges and stone fronts or walls.
39. African Gazebo
This one’s well above average and can transform your garden entirely. It’s not the easiest to make because of the materials, but the result is worth the effort. Notice how it integrates a fireplace.
40. Glass Gazebo
Last but certainly not least, here’s a structure that uses sliding doors and modern materials to create a wonderful garden space. Place it at the edge of an artificial lake or swimming pool or anywhere else you think fit.
Best Gazebos for Sale Reviewed
Don’t have time to build your own gazebo? No problem. You can buy one ready-made without sacrificing quality or looks. And save some money in the process, too!
Here are our recommendations to help you save time and make an inspired choice.
1. Sojag Messina Hardtop Gazebo
The Messina Hardtop is our number one overall pick. This is the best of the best, the cream of the crop.
Covering an area of 192 square meters, you can place in it a dining table and some chairs too! You can create your own outdoor room instantly.
You can use this one as an outdoor dining room or living room at the same time.
- The aluminum is dyed to make it look darker
- Slanted and vented roof makes rain slide off and prevents the build-up of hot air inside
- Includes a mosquito net to keep the bugs and other insects away
- Resists rust
- Curtains sold separately
- Not the cheapest option around
2. Palram Palermo 3000 Gazebo
Palermo 3000 (10’x10′) (Gray) is our top choice for smaller gazebos. It looks great and is well built so you can count on it as a stable fixture in your garden.
It can accommodate three to four chairs, making it a good choice for a small family. There aren’t that many hardtops out there that come near this one in this price range.
- Vented top
- Includes a mosquito net
- The cost is very affordable
- 10-year warranty
- Polycarbonate roof may feel synthetic if you’re used to tilled roofs
- Assembly could have been made easier
3. Sunjoy Chatham Steel Hardtop Gazebo
The elegant and well-constructed Chatham Steel Hardtop is another top pick. It looks great in all gardens and provides the year-round-protection you want from this kind of garden structure.
It can accommodate one couch and a few chairs. That’s it! Unfortunately, you can’t use it as a multi-purpose outdoor room. If if you just one to create a quiet outdoor nook, it’s an inspired choice.
- Metal rooftop provides good shade in summer
- You don’t have to worry that it will rust or get damaged by the weather
- Affordable for what you get compared to building a wooden pergola or other products on the market
- Doesn’t have a mosquito netting
- Installation can be time-consuming
Looking for even more gazebos you can buy? Explore now this list of bestsellers. You may find in it something you like!
Gazebo Frequently Asked Questions
Gazebos are a popular garden feature, so no wonder we hear gardeners ask a lot of questions about them.
We’ve put together the most popular questions and thought we may as well answer them. We hope you find the answers useful!
What is a gazebo used for?
A gazebo provides shade and shelter and a nice view while often also creating a place where you can relax by yourself or with friends. It often also serves an ornamental purpose, being one of the highlight features of a garden or backyard.
What is the difference between a pergola and a gazebo?
A pergola provides partial shade protection while a gazebo has a fully covered roof to provide full shade. Gazebos are also often more ornate and sophisticated in their design, having not only a functional but also a decorative value.
How much does it cost to build a 12×12 gazebo?
You will usually need at least $3000 to build a 12×12 structure. The final price depends on the materials you use, their availability in your area, and whether you can do all the work yourself. You can find a more cost-effective option without sacrificing style or functionality by buying a ready-made gazebo.
Did Anyone Say Gazebo?
With the right gazebo, you won’t be gazing just at the surrounding greenery, but also at the structure itself.
Remember, this structure doesn’t serve only a functional purpose–it’s there to look nice. It can add more charm to your garden or backyard.
Whether you place it at the end of a long pathway, in a nook, or at the edge of a pool or artificial lake, a gazebo is likely going to be one of the main attractions of your garden.
We hope the ideas we shared with you will inspire you to build your own or at least buy one to create a nice outdoor space for you and your family.
Have any of the ideas we shared with you caught your fancy? Drop us a comment in the section below and let us know.
Or write to us using our contact page. We’d be happy to hear from you.
Happy gazing and see you next post!