6 Backyard Pavilions Ideas and DIY Plans

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Backyard pavilions are magical spaces! You can enjoy balmy summer evenings with family and friends or crisp romantic date nights, sipping wine and watching the sunset.

Many family weddings and reunions have taken place in a backyard pavilion, and they add a touch of elegance and homeliness to any setting.

That’s why we’re going to brainstorm six backyard pavilion ideas and DIY pavilion plans. That way, you can plan an impeccably-relaxing backyard retreat – without leaving your homestead!

Backyard pavilions also enhance and extend your outdoor living area. Here are six ideas to give your outdoor pavilion a unique appeal. You can add:

  1. Ample seating arrangements
  2. A kitchen area
  3. More shade
  4. A Pool
  5. Hammocks with seasonal cushions
  6. Blinds for privacy

Backyard pavilions usually contain comfortable seating and basic furnishings. The size should complement your backyard space. You can manually build a pavilion – or, you can order a prefab kit. 

There are also plenty of simple plans available online that you can DIY. Selecting the correct style of a pavilion that will suit your backyard and budget can be challenging.

Let’s dive much deeper into backyard pavilions – including the best backyard ideas and free DIY plans.


What Is a Backyard Pavilion?

A backyard pavilion is a sheltered space that extends the living area of your home. Some pavilions are attached to the house, while others are free-standing. A pavilion always has a roof that protects from the elements, but the open-plan sides give the feeling of being outdoors.

Some pavilions have a specific purpose; for example, they can reside next to a pool to provide shelter from the sun or extend the dining area on the house. Others are decorative or backyard features.

Regardless of their stated use – a backyard pavilion usually contains seating and is almost always used for relaxation!

Read More – How to Make a Fire Pit Grill! – DIY Tips for Epic BBQs and Fires!

Backyard Pavilion Ideas

Backyard pavilions should be comfortable, relaxed, and most of all, versatile outdoor spaces that you can transform to suit the occasion. They’re perfect for formal events like intimate weddings, family memorials, spontaneous fun gatherings, and lazy summer days.

There are a lot of inspiration backyard pavilion ideas available that you can refer to while planning yours.

1. Epic Garden Pavilion – Instant Yard Upgrade

backyard gazebo pavilion garden
Your backyard garden is the perfect plot to erect a pavilion. This serene landscape with a gazebo/pavilion has me thinking of someplace much warmer.

Tucked away in this secluded garden, you’ll find a rustic (yet elegant) pavilion surrounded by trees and shrubs. What a perfect location for a morning breakfast – or late afternoon tea!

Sometimes, the obvious things in life work the best. This pleasant garden pavilion is no exception. Who says you need a massively tall or intricate pavilion to treat yourself? Not us!

Picture the sounds of the chirping birds. Imagine hearing the brisk November breeze trickling through the evergreens as you unwind in your backyard. What a way to relax – this pavilion is among my favorites!

2. Add a Kitchen – Alpine Wood Pavilion

wood alpine kitchen pavilion
This wood pavilion from Country Lane Gazebos provides the best of both worlds. Extra counter space and ample opportunity to leisurely chef your best dishes – all while being outdoors. 

This 10 x 14 design blends in immaculately in any outdoor setting. The design has modified the traditional four-pillar post method by adding a small kitchen area to one side.

This outdoor kitchen feature creates a charming, relaxed meal preparation and al fresco dining area. 

3. Add Some Shade – Shaded Pavilion

wood alpine picnic table pavilion
This alpine pavilion with cedar stain from Country Lane Gazebos is one of my favorites. Here’s how to combine luxury with the great outdoors. I love the high ceiling and spacious design.

I love this heavily wooded and shaded pavilion and the forested design. The picnic table adds an excellent touch.

At the same time, it retains its open, airy feel but with a little more privacy and protection from the heat.

Imagine serving your family or guests a smokey BBQ under this magnificent structure. Talk about maximum relaxation. Perfect!

I love the outdoorsy design!

Read More – Making a Rock Garden – All in One Guide!

4. Stay Cool – Poolside Pavilion

poolside pavilion
This perfect poolside pavilion from Neal’s Project Design provides the best comforts, including tv, food prep space, a grill, seating, counter space, and kitchen. It also looks beautiful!

Adding a pavilion to your pool area will add a whole new dimension to your summer experience. No more wet feet tramping through the house after each dip to get out of the sun.

The pavilion can provide a relaxing poolside resort ambiance if you furnish it comfortably!

You can also set up a whole entertainment area next to the pool for your family and friends. You entertain your guests all summer long.

5. Create a Resort in Your Backyard – Add Hammocks

Comfy Breathable Hammock
Quick Dry Hammock Waterproof and UV Resistant

This soft, breathable hammock will immediately upgrade any backyard patio, pavilion, or gazebo. It also holds 400 pounds, so you feel secure as you relax. The only downside is that you may find yourself dozing off all too readily.

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06/12/2024 08:27 am GMT

You can have the best pavilion in the world, with cutting-edge architectural design and the most premium building materials. But – what if you don’t have anywhere comfortable to relax?!

I can’t imagine a more tragic pavilion failure. (I’m only half-joking.) That’s why your pavilion needs a hammock. Stat!

Adding a hammock or two will create a relaxed feel to your backyard pavilion.

Cushions and throws on the hammocks can rotate according to the changing seasons or occasion, and your pavilion will quickly transform into a tranquil reading space or special romantic nook.

6. Create a Private Outdoor Space – Add Blinds

Cocoa Privacy Blinds
Radiance Cord Free, Roll-up Reed Shade, Cocoa, 60" W x 72" L
$47.45 $32.74

These cocoa bamboo blinds provide privacy for your front porch, pergola, pavilion, or patio. They also help keep the sun out of your eyes and are perfect for indoor or outdoor use.

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06/12/2024 11:52 am GMT

After a long day of mowing the lawn, de-weeding the garden, and stacking hay as high as I can reach, the last thing I want to do is worry about nosey neighbors peeking inside of my pavilion!

That’s why your pavilion might benefit big time from the right pair of shades. Privacy shades give you more solitude and peace of mind. These days? That counts as everything!

Your backyard pavilion may soon become your favorite place, so why not spend as much time as possible there? By adding retractable blinds, you could stay comfortably overnight in your pavilion on hot summer nights – or chilly November evenings.

Blinds will not only add privacy but be able to close off one side at a time selectively, and you will be able to block any unforeseen breezes or rays from the sun coming in from one side.

Free DIY Pavilion Plans

There are many DIY backyard pavilion plans available online. You’ll find an abundant wealth of options if you wish to upgrade your existing patio with a pavilion or if you want to construct one from scratch.

Plans range from simple to elaborate. Building the chamber structure yourself may be a fun project, and it will save you money, but be sure to check that the plans you select comply fully with the building codes in your area before you start.

(Some small towns throughout the USA are infamous for stringent building codes. Don’t invest in materials only to learn after that you’re violating a local building code. Conduct research beforehand!)

1. Build a Timber Framed Pavilion Gazebo

Timber Frame Pavilion Gazebo for Garden or Yard - Part 1 of 3
When you see the complexity of this pavilion’s roof – you may panic. But don’t worry! The instructions are surprisingly easy to follow. Even if you don’t want to build a pavilion yourself – it’s good to know how!

I admit I’m not the most tool-handy person in the world. But this three-part DIY pavilion series makes it look easy!

If you want to learn how to build a garden gazebo from scratch, then here’s a straightforward tutorial to watch.

You’ll learn how to build a timber frame gazebo using straightforward joinery.

They also reveal the tools they use, the strategies for planning your pavilion, and step-by-step instructions.

(You can also download the pavilion plans if you wish.)

2. Basic 10 x 12 Backyard Pavilion

10 by 12 pavilion plans
This DIY pavilion tutorial from HowToSpeicalist is worth checking out. Gable roofs remind me of traditional farmyard architecture. They look cool!

This plan is for a very simple rectangular-shaped pavilion. What I like about this plan is that the structure can fit into a variety of settings, and it can be made special by adding unique touches to suit particular occasions or when your budget allows.

The provided plan is clear and easy to follow, and the result will be a heavy-duty structure that will be the setting for many precious memories.

The roof material in the design is asphalt shingles, but you could use the same roofing on your house so that your pavilion blends seamlessly into your backyard space.

You can find the DIY plan for this design here: https://howtospecialist.com/outdoor/10×12-pavilion-free-diy-plans.

3. DIY Pavilion Build Using Heavy Logs

DIY - Pavilion Build
How can you turn a concrete slab into a highly functional and beautiful backyard pavilion? Heres’s how! Perfect for backyard BBQs and parties!

Here’s another excellent DIY pavilion tutorial that’s worthy of praise. It looks like the builder had an existing concrete slab.

Rather than go through the hassle of manually removing the concrete – they turned lemons into lemonade!

Watch as they add lumber, stain the boards, and build the pavilion. From scratch!

The results look perfect – and I love the old-fashioned (and rustic) logs as the pillars to hold the roof.

Sturdy, reliable, and natural. How can you lose?

4. Three Gable Timber Pavilion

Timber Frame Style Pavilion Gazebo for Backyard or Patio - post and beam
This pavilion tutorial focuses primarily on posts and beams – two of the most critical components of your pavilion. Don’t skip this step!

This design is for those who prefer something a bit different. The three gable design pavilion adds an extra element to the simplicity of the traditional rectangular or square-shaped roof. The design is tremendously solid and built to last.

You can also follow the construction of this pavilion on YouTube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuRMRWp4Ce0

Premium DIY Pavilion Kits

Maybe you want to construct a backyard pavilion to help host your next wedding, business meeting, backyard barbeque, or family get-together.

But – what if you don’t want to shell out the cash for a contractor to build your pavilion? Or, what if you don’t want to fuss with planning and organizing all the materials you need?

If that’s the case, there are a few backyard pavilion kit manufacturers that give you everything you need to build a pavilion. All materials included!

You may or may not save money on materials building a pavilion with a DIY kit. However, a DIY kit can help save you the frustration of figuring out the materials you need.

Here are some of the most popular DIY pavilion and gazebo kits we could find.

1. Affordable DIY Gazebo Pavilion Kit

DIY Pavilion Kit
Purple Leaf Outdoor Retractable Pergola Pavilion with Canopy
$358.88 $339.96

Here's one of the most affordable DIY pavilion kits that we could find - that also has good reviews. Perfect for outdoor barbeques, entertainment, parties, and relaxation!

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If you want to upgrade your porch or patio without shelling out thousands of dollars (or more), then here’s one of the most popular DIY pavilion kits for under $1,000.

The adjustable canopy is soft polyester and is roughly 10-by-10 feet. Perfectly rests over your hot tub, pool, backyard, deck, or patio.

The reviews for this DIY kit are mostly excellent on Amazon. However, a few customers mention that installation is a tad tricky. It may take you a few hours. Or more.

But, good things, especially a beautiful backyard pavilion or gazebo, take time!

2. Large Backyard Pavilion with Gabled Roof

This large 16 x 20 pavilion is perfect for those who have big backyards. It will provide ample space to seat large families comfortably and instantly make your home’s living area feel more spacious. 

The design of this pavilion is sturdy, and the roof features overhanging sides that add a whimsical touch. There is enough covered space to add a pizza oven or yoga area on one side of the pavilion and keep the other side as the regular kick-back and relax family area.

Read more premium DIY Gazebo and Pavilion kits from Country Lane Gazebos.

3. The Weekender Pavilion

Here’s another DIY pavilion idea from Country Lane Gazebos.

This 12 x 12 delightful backyard pavilion is affordable to build. The simple aluminum roof structure is much lighter and faster to construct than some more heavy-duty plans. 

The uprights are sturdy cedar posts giving the pavilion a solid grounded feel that you can decorate with fairy lights on summer evenings or drape in cloth for special events.

You could paint the roof a color that will fit in with the look and feel of your backyard.

More Pavilion Questions and Answers

We know that starting an outdoor pavilion project is overwhelming these days – especially since the cost of lumber and services seem to keep ticking upward.

That’s why we’re answering some of the most common questions you’re likely to have when you begin researching your pavilion.

We hope these questions and answers help!

How Much Does It Cost to Build an Outdoor Pavilion?

The cost to build an outside pavilion varies according to the size, design, and materials selected.

The price of a basic 8 x 10′ wood pavilion constructed by a company such as Lancaster County Backyard starts at around $5,500. It becomes incrementally more as the size increases or more expensive materials are incorporated.

If you are about to build the structure yourself, you can save a significant amount of money. On average, materials to construct an outdoor pavilion will cost anything from $3,000 upwards, depending on the design. Since you won’t be paying for labor, you may be able to afford some additional features like adding a fireplace.

You can also purchase an outdoor pavilion kit. Companies like Country Lane Gazebos offer ready to assemble outdoor pavilion kits. These kits provide professional-looking results.

All the wood is predrilled and precut. All you will need to do is use your tools and follow the assembly instructions. The cost of wood pavilion kits starts at $6,370, and the vinyl kits start at $7,965.

But remember what’s happened over the last few years! The cost of materials has gone up due to supply issues and inflationary pressures.

Therefore, we propose that the cost of building a pavilion varies greatly!

Read More – Turn Your Backyard into an Outdoor Living Space – 27 New Ideas for your Garden

What Is a Good Size Pavilion?

A good size pavilion fits perfectly into the backyard space that you have available. If you have a small backyard, your pavilion could be as small as 10 x 10 feet.

10 x 14 feet pavilions are a popular size to extend the living area. If you require the structure for a specific purpose, for example, to host large groups, you may need a 20 x20 ft pavilion.

When thinking about what size your outdoor pavilion should be, ensure that you can walk around the structure comfortably when planning. 

That way, you know that the space where you intend to build the pavilion won’t look too crowded, and you will also always be able to access it easily.

How Tall Should a Backyard Pavilion Be?

A backyard pavilion needs to have an open, airy feel about it. The bottom beam that runs around the structure’s perimeter should never be less than 7 feet high.

A standard pavilion is, on average, 8 or 9 feet tall. The area should feel cozy and, at the same time, open.

What Is the Difference Between a Pergola and a Pavilion?

The main difference between a pavilion and a pergola is the roof. Both have four pillars that support the structure’s roof. But one provides shade and shelter, while the other is open to the weather and provides minimal shade.


Open roof

Closed roof

Roof made of cross beams or lattices

Roof made of shingles, metal, or thatch

Flat roof

Sloping roof rising to a peak. Equal on all sides

Open to weather elements

Sheltered undercover space

Pavilion vs. Pergola Differences

What Do I Need to Build a Pavilion?

The design of your pavilion will determine what materials you require for the project. When making a list of materials, it helps to break the process down into layers. Breaking down your project also helps you budget your construction easier.

The cost of building materials is sky-high in 2021, and 2022 could be even worse! In this way, you can spread the cost of materials out over a more extended period.



If you are not going to dig the foundation yourself, you will need to buy (or hire) a backhoe.

You will also need concrete for the slab. You may also like to add paving around the pavilion or lead it.


Whatever uprights you will be using. (These can be built with bricks but more commonly are thick wooden posts. The uprights need to be securely anchored and will support the roof structure.


Roofing materials! Asphalt shingles or metal sheets, roof beams, rafters, shade planks, and knee braces. The number of each you will require will depend on the size and design of the pavilion you are constructing.

Sundry Items

Wood stain or paint, screws, nails, flooring material, tiles, and decorative features like extra gables.

DIY Pavilion Building Supply List

What Can You Do in a Pavilion?

A pavilion is a spacious open-air area that transforms to suit many occasions. Pavilions provide sheltered seating for the family. They’re also great for hosting functions and serving as a dining area, bar area, party venue, or barbecue pit.

Backyard pavilions provide a safe time-out place for all household members when they need a break from their daily routine. It’s like having a little secluded resort right in your backyard where you can recharge your batteries.

So – you’re only limited by your imagination! Your pavilion is your epicenter host for all backyard activities and festivals. It’s also an excellent place to unwind after gardening or yard work.

Our Best Pavilion Tips Made Easy!

A backyard pavilion is a feature that will add charm and value to your property. The perfect pavilion structure will extend your living area and allow you to enjoy more time outdoors in a sheltered area.

While it may initially take some effort to build, this versatile backyard feature will increase your property’s value and be the setting for many years of family memories.

Thanks again for reading our best pavilion tips!

If you have any questions about building the best pavilion for your yard, or if you have good tips to help other homesteaders, please share!

We thank you again for reading.

Have a great day!

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