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

Outdoor Happens is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Click to learn more

1. Tranquility

Hanging chair in the garden

This backyard living space is super simple, yet so inviting. The hanging chair just begs you to hop in and chill out. The yard itself is mainly lawn, creating a feeling of space and calm, with a few hedging plants around the outside. I love the wooden terrace and the pot plant in the corner. 


2. Inviting Seats

garden chair and table on terrace flowers bush

Creating a nice little corner in your backyard, like this one, is a great way to make your yard feel inviting. They’ve just some simple items like candle holders and a small wooden table to create interest, and small pot plants for colour. I’d surround this corner with scented plants for ultra decadence!

3. Hideaway

Wooden terrace surrounded by greenery

This terrace is amazing with its ‘walk-into-my-hideaway’ appearance. I love how the walkway opens up to a broader terrace, and the furniture is spot-on. I’d add some colourful cushions! The owners have used grasses and smaller ground covering plants along the walkway, and bigger, shade-creating trees around the back.  

4. Dedicated Outdoor Cooking

Campfire with a cooking pot

We have something like this set up at our place, just a simple outdoor place, outlined with rocks. We purchased a camping firepit cooking set up, which is now permanently set up over the firepit. It has a plate for grilling meat and hooks for kettles etc. We use it all the time, from a quick campfire at night, to grilling some marshmallows, it’s become one of our favourite spaces!

Learn how to build a DIY smoker in your backyard!

5. Happy Place

Spacious terrace with garden swing

This one makes you happy at first glance. Pops of colour, a guitar, groovy cushions… Right to the little wooden cube storage unit with the cacti on top. The swinging bench is beautiful too!

6. Low Maintenance & Modern

Garden with large pool

This backyard space is ultra low-maintenance and has a very modern feel about it. I’m missing some little tables around the chairs and the couch under the pergola, but the exposed brick wall is cool. This would be gorgeous with some backyard hammocks! The yard is mainly lawn, with potted topiaries lining the steps. The pool is amazing, of course. 

7. Pergola Paradise

Blue sofa under a wooden pergola

This blue of the cushions is stunning, it goes really well with the lawn and the wall. The thing I love the most here is the hanging plants that come down over the back wall, it creates a natural curtain. Hanging pots and lights are a great addition. 

8. Macrame and Knit

A beige string swing with a pillow on a patio. Wicker baskets, a

I’m a little bit in love with this hanging macrame chair! Something like that would make any outdoor living space inviting. I’d add some bigger cushions so it’s actually comfortable, but it looks great with the cane baskets and knitted blanket. Natural fibres all over. 

Homesteading for survival - grow your own food

9. Outdoor Dining

Outdoor dining room with wooden garden furniture set with table and chairs

You can’t leave this one set up without a roof, of course, in case it rains, but what an amazing space for a backyard party or outdoor dining! The wooden chairs blend perfectly with the plants around it, and the wooden planters can be used for herbs or lovely scented plants. 

10. Rugged Up

Garden furniture and rug

This rug! I wouldn’t have picked this if I saw it in the shop, but it looks amazing on this wooden terrace, with the rattan furniture. I would have loved some colourful cushions, maybe in red, for some pops of colour. 

11. Rocking Chairs

Empty wood chair outdoor garden

This old-style seating set up is great, especially with the taller grass-like plants behind it. Yucca-style plants would look great there, as would smaller palms like Chamaedorea’s, or Cordylines for colour. The little table is great, and it looks like it has an umbrella for shade. I could see myself sitting here, chilling with a good book. Might just need a foot stool. 

12. Tropical Resort Style

Pillow on sofa furniture decoration outdoor patio in the garden

The attraction here is the tropical appeal. The palm trees and super-green foliage, combined with the orange on the couch are amazing, and that little Staghorn will look amazing when it gets bigger. You could just imagine yourself at a tropical resort here. 

Cub Cadet

13. Easy Does It

This day is too beautiful to spend it inside

The only thing missing here is a pergola-style roof over the seats on the terrace. I love the tree, perfectly positioned for shade. They have an umbrella set up, so they must be using that in place of a roof, but with a roof you could set up a permanent grill/outdoor kitchen for full functionality. The lawn is huge and spacious, and I like the pops of topiaries for interest. 

14. Hammock

Crocheted hammock with straw hat and book

Every backyard needs a hammock or two! This hammock, with its lace edges and boho look, is amazing and would fit in any backyard design. I have a couple of hammocks on the veranda, and a couple in the garden under big mango trees. They’re so versatile, just move them elsewhere if the positioning doesn’t suit, or take them camping. See the best backyard hammocks and best sleeping pads for hammocks

15. Outdoor Room

Empty chair decoration outdoor patio

This small space has been transformed into an outdoor room. An easy-to-maintain floor, exposed-stone wall, right down to simple chairs, I love this. It’s ultra private, what a space for a relaxing chat and a coffee! I’d try and find space for a hot tub or outdoor shower here somewhere, it’s perfect. 

16. Mystical

Stone bench by plants against surrounding wall

This one won’t be everyone’s cup-of-tea, but then again, what design is? And, by the way, if you do like a cup of tea – why not grow your own? It’s a work of art for your own tastes, not someone else’s.

I, for one, love this. Yes, it’s dark and possibly a bit creepy (look at the feet on that bench!), but it’s a place for wonder and meditation, connecting with mythical things, maybe some fairies. That variegated shrub is awesome! Looks like a great place to sit in summer, you’d get all-day shade. 

17. Another Viewpoint

Plants in sunny backyard

Yes, this is that same rug again, the one I’d never buy in the shop but looks amazing in this setting. I just wanted to show you another perspective of it, in particular the rocks they’ve mulched the garden with. (Be careful with rock mulch if you’re in a hot or super cold climate though, they’re not very good at regulating soil temperature and can harm your plants.) That big tree is incredible. 

18. Swim in Style

Living room of a villa with pool in the garden

The ultimate in indoor-outdoor flow. This big glass wall with giant sliding doors and instant connection with the backyard is a dream! You could sit on that big chair, indoors, and enjoy the outdoors without interruptions. Any pool is a great pool, indeed, but this one is very modern and unobtrusive. The Dragon Trees living the pool are fantastic no-mess trees, will live forever, and are super hardy. 

19. House Enhancement

Exterior of house surrounded by lush greenery

A perfect example of how a garden can compliment your house, and make it look even better. The dark wood and light colours of the house look amazing with the lush garden, planted right up to the house. It’d create a really cool side of the house. Just make sure your termite treatment is up-to-date if there are termites in your area!

Goodbye Rusty Lids, Hello reCAP Mason Jar Lids

20. Pool-Centered

Garden on two levels with large pool and lush vegetation

There’s no doubt that this is an incredible pool! My favorite features are the curved planted box that comes into the pool, and the round one IN the pool. This garden also has the great hanging-vine curtains and the Dragon Tree, and that orange-flowering shrub is beautiful for added colour. 

21. Roman Style

Lush garden with table set under a gazebo and barbecue on background

This pergola is awesome, those pillars! I’m missing some climbing roses growing up them for colour, but all-in-all, this backyard is all style. It’s low-maintenance with a nice picnic-style table, and how great are the shelves along the back wall!

22. Make the Most of It

Terrace surrounded by lush garden

This is truly making the most of a small space. The Ivy-type vine does a great job of hiding the metal fence, and the dark floor and dark furniture look amazing with the bright green surrounding it. The big glass walls of the house are stunning, and you’d have a great, private view of your backyard. 

23. Picturesque

Beautiful garden in a sunny day

Traditional style here, with lots of little gadgets. The apple tree is the best thing here, along with the barn-style door. The picture frames with plants inside are quirky and I really love the little shelf underneath. There’s a lot going on here, but you could create this look with things you find around the yard. An old ladder, a shovel, a watering can…

24. Holiday Feeling

Garden Backyard Pond

Wow. Just wow. This one may not be feasible for a lot of us, but my, a girl can only dream. That pond is to die for, the round terrace, those chairs! Even the shrubs are so perfect it’s not funny. There is something missing though… Comfy cushions! Can’t enjoy heaven without cushion now, can we.  

25. Log Path

Landscape design, evergreen bushes and path

Love, love this path! Perfect for a quiet meander through the backyard, a wander to check up on all your plants, the critters in your garden, and how the kids would love this! My girls would be skipping from log to log, and the same on those great stones lining the pathway. If you weren’t using your wood offcuts for firewood, this is a great purpose for them.

26. Outdoor Functionality

Dining Table set in Lush Landscaped Garden

Not just one seating area, but two… Twice the enjoyment. This is a super functional backyard, only missing a grill or smoker for perfect backyard parties and entertaining. The wooden trellises are amazing, imagine the climbing plants you could grow up them! 

27. Add a Grill or Two

Grill in garden

No backyard living space is complete without a cooking setup of some sort! Add a grill, a pizza oven, a smoker, and of course, a dining table with plenty of seating for everybody. Invite family and friends to enjoy your new backyard with you. 

I hope you’ve enjoyed these ideas for backyard outdoor living space ideas. What was your favorite? What will you add to your backyard, or what will you change?

pit barrel cooker

Until next time, Elle 

Check out our Microgreens at True Leaf Market
Share the Love!
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on reddit
Share on print
Share on email

More to Enjoy...

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedback
View all comments
Spring 2021 Preview - Up to 50% Off
Would love your thoughts, please comment!x