Dwell's Favorite 79 Outdoor Side Yard Design Photos And Ideas

The outdoor living space of the Birch Le Collaboration House features a wood-burning fireplace under large, covered porch.
In the wintertime, the living room is cozy and welcoming with its large fireplace and warm lighting.
A monolithic opening in the facade provides an entrance from the exterior into the courtyard. The property's extensive landscaping was completed by George Girvin, with outdoor lighting by designer Pamela Burton.
Concrete stairs lead from the kitchen to the pool area. A peekaboo perforated screen crafted from black metal allows guests to see the activity unfolding inside.
A string of glass hallways connect the four pavilions, bringing a slice of the great outdoors inside.
The courtyard offers a soothing space to take a break.
The end of each bedroom opens up to a private brick patio connecting the two spaces. Doors along the side also open up to full expose the bedroom spaces to the pool.
Saddle Peak Residence by AUX Architecture
The outdoor atrium of Family House Litvínovice is a completely private space that's well-suited for the installation of a hammock, outdoor bath, or shower. A11 designed the home to be an exploration of minimalism and privacy from the outside world.
A wooden picnic table is located off one end of the living room, creating a tranquil setting to enjoy alfresco dining while soaking up the sunshine.
Located in Aarhus, Denmark, Villa R is a minimalist, serene structure clad in zinc panels. "The objective was to create a house that brings the forest inside through large glass panels—and create an ever-changing seasonal backdrop for the interior living spaces," stated the architecture firm, C.F. Møller, of the 3,200-square-foot abode.
Inspired by the surrounding landscape of chestnut trees, rocky hillside, and bubbling stream, Portuguese architecture firm 3r Ernesto Pereira chose to blend into, and take advantage of, the local geography rather than fight against it at this sleek, modern home near the coastal city of Porto. At a cost of €100,000 (approximately $125,000) and measuring about 140 square meters, this stunning, wood-and-glass retreat took about four months to construct.
A sunken conversation pit surrounding a fire pit sits adjacent to the pool in this semi-outdoor space at a home in Atlantic Beach, Florida.
Beyond the large pedestrian gate, “which is really the home’s front door,” says Gottschalk, “the house begins to reveal its strong indoor and outdoor relationship. Blurring the boundary between the two is a key design element.”
The internal courtyard is the heart of the home.
Wood decking extends out to the yard.
Outside, a triangular saltwater pool overlooks breathtaking views.
For energy efficiency, the architects fitted the walls with wood fiber insulation and triple-glazed windows.
Water features pepper the gardens throughout.
Negative space appears to be carved out of the dark exterior to reveal the home's bright white interiors.
Finished with a ceiling and dining table set, the second-floor patio is an optimal entertaining space.
"The importance of this outdoor connection was a very high priority for the clients," O'Brien explains. "They wanted the boys to be free, but wanted to keep an eye on them without them feeling like they’re being monitored."
Melanie Maher sunbathes beneath the lattice of a pool house, which is clad in Cor-Ten steel.
Just off this kitchen is this gorgeous "edible garden" making garden-to-table dining a reality in your very own home.
A courtyard creates visual separation between the main house and the addition.
The internal courtyard looks into the living, dining and kitchen space of the home's ground floor.
The outdoors are part of the cohesive design, embracing the vegetation, sites, and sunlight.
A Cuadra San Cristóbal courtyard surrounded by vibrant pink walls.
A collection of vintage furniture, including a rattan armchair and a drafting table, is gathered around the terrace fireplace, which shares a volume with the hearth in the adjacent living room behind. Outdoor sconces are from iGuzzini.
Beside reduced construction time, SysHaus provides homeowners with a truly sustainable home that arrives at its site 95-percent ready for assembly.
The master bedroom was raised and cantilevered so as not to disturb the mature oak tree roots. Boulders are used as steps to the lawn.
Moving the entrance off the street to the rear of the house allowed for the creation of a diminutive side yard.
An outdoor grilling area on the side porch.
North elevation
Irregular stone pavers lead to the outdoor grill.
A young Finnish designer bypasses building permits by creating an affordable tiny home under 100 square feet.
Sævik compares her house to a contemplative hideout. “It’s very quiet,” she says. “You can concentrate and let thoughts fly.” Her favorite summer pastimes include reading, painting, drawing, yoga, and “just sitting and feeling the forest,” she says.
While Falck built most of the tiny home himself, he hired a local carpenter to build the window frame and door.
By creating a series of platforms and courtyards to expand the functional ground plane, B&B Residence circumvents the challenges of its steep site.
Entry Court
When setting out to buy a home, always make sure you find a local realtor in the area you want to live in.
"The border between inside and outside fades because of the perpetuation of the washed concrete flooring, reminiscent of cannon bases. Just like the shutters of the old barn, the sliding facades of the expansion offer the opportunity to seal off the guest complex entirely," explains Vanhoutte.
The living area, which is connected to an outdoor terrace, provides ample room for entertaining.
The roof terrace is conceived as a large exterior room, delimited by walls and windows that frame the fantastic views of the Monterrey mountains.
Planters have been placed around the pleats to create pockets of sky gardens on the perimeter of the building, with some featuring steps that lead to other outdoor terraces.
In this view, one can see how the curved addition makes space for an outdoor seating area with a fire pit, and eventually meets the clapboard form of the original house.
Located on the western Danish coast within walking distance of the North Sea, this home was designed by Soren Sarup to integrate elements of the surrounding landscape and to highlight natural, contemporary beauty. The interior fuses clean-lined simplicity, an abundance of wood surfaces, and a restrained mix of Danish-modern and vintage furniture to create a visually stimulating yet relaxing environment that extends between indoor and outdoor living spaces.

Whether it's a backyard patio, an infinity pool, or a rooftop terrace, these modern outdoor spaces add to the richness of daily life. Escape into nature, or get lost in city views. Wherever you are, let these outdoor photos take you somewhere new with inspirational ideas for yards, gardens, outdoor tubs and showers, patios, porches, and decks.