Making sure that your patio has enough privacy is key to creating a relaxing outdoor space. Whether you live in a dense urban area, a suburban setting with neighbors on the other side of the fence, or even in a more secluded area in the country, the desert, or by the sea, your patio should feel like an oasis where you can block out the world.
From hardscaping to plants to fencing to accessories like privacy screens and outdoor curtains and simple DIYs, here are some patio privacy ideas in a range of styles and price points to help you create a backyard haven that’s visible only to birds (or drones).
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Fence + Pergola
A privacy fence painted dark brown and lined with ladder trellises planted with climbing ivy gives this Florida patio from Calimia Home a comfortable feel. A matching pergola helps filter light and makes it feel cozy.Continue to 2 of 50 below.
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Hedge Your Bets
If you want to create a degree of privacy from the neighbors without putting up a fence, consider placing a strategic hedge, bush, or tree that will shelter your seating area from prying eyes like this backyard patio from Urbanology Designs.Continue to 3 of 50 below.
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Add Another Story
Blanco Bungalow topped off a painted brick wall with wood fencing to add extra privacy for this backyard patio that is used as an outdoor living room. Don't be afraid to mix materials to add interest or make your backyard privacy project easier to accomplish.Continue to 4 of 50 below.
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A striped awning protects this outdoor dining area from Calimia Home from unwanted rays, sudden rain showers, or your neighbor's kid's drone from spying on your dinner parties. The patio awnings of this Florida home were carried throughout the exterior including the home's front windows for a cohesive look that also helps to shade the home and help minimize the need to crank the A.C.Continue to 5 of 50 below.
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Add a Privacy Screen
This backyard patio designed by Emily Bowser for Emily Henderson Design includes a tall wooden privacy screen with a laser cut pattern that adds style to the seating area while sheltering it from view from unwanted surveillance from next door.Continue to 6 of 50 below.
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Screen Off the Outdoor Bar
The same screen was used to block a window in the house across the fence, adding privacy while defining the outdoor bar area.Continue to 7 of 50 below.
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Detached Patio Oasis
Even if there are no neighbors around, creating a private patio in the context of a larger open space can make it feel more intimate and encourage you to use it. On this property from Fantastic Frank, an oval brick-lined patio is surrounded by hedging in various shapes and sizes to add privacy and interest. Equipped with a simple table and chairs, it is flanked at the entrance by two potted urns that give it a sense of grandeur that matches the sweeping lawns and nearby hedge maze.Continue to 8 of 50 below.
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Tall hedges lend this spacious Portland, Oregon patio from BASE Landscape Architecture a sense of privacy and a mood-boosting dose of greenery. The architects used a range of stones to build a neutral, chic outdoor living room with a mix of seating, sculptural side tables, and a custom banquette with a high back that houses firewood beneath the seating for the stainless steel fire pit that is topped with a safety screen cover.Continue to 9 of 50 below.
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High Walls + Metal Doors
This Palm Springs pool patio from Michelle Boudreau Design has a sense of privacy thanks to high solid walls and a series of metal doors that give it an exclusive feel.Continue to 10 of 50 below.
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Planters + Vertical Hedges
On this patio designed by Emily Bowser for Emily Henderson Design, privacy fencing was reinforced with a row of wooden box planters with tall vertical hedges that provide more privacy as they grow. The plants add atmosphere to the seating area while creating a natural privacy screen that is durable and sustainable.Continue to 11 of 50 below.
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Build a Few Walls
If you are building a home from scratch, think about building in privacy and light control using architecture and hardscaping, taking into account the location of your lot. Freestanding walls around the patio of this Spanish island new build property from Fantastic Frank create shelter from views and excess sun depending on the time of day.Continue to 12 of 50 below.
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Wall of Greens
A neighbor-friendly way to screen yourself from unwanted views is to allow your trees, hedges, and other plants to grow tall and wide to help shelter the view to your outdoor space, like this back patio designed by Emily Bowser for Emily Henderson Design. Not pruning every plant within an inch of its life will lend your space an effortless, lived-in feel that will help you relax.Continue to 13 of 50 below.
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Michelle Boudreau Design added vertical plantings along the three sides of this U-shaped Palm Springs patio to add greenery and privacy to the yard and outdoor seating area.Continue to 14 of 50 below.
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If you live in a neighborhood where putting up a fence is discouraged or prohibited, you can find ways to steal a sense of privacy by laying out your furniture facing away from the folks next door. This backyard patio from Christina Kim Interior Design is in full view of the next door neighbors, but a curved banquette is placed with its back to the fence facing inward to create a place to relax and forget you share the space. Lounge chairs facing forward will help keep you focused straight ahead.Continue to 15 of 50 below.
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Top Off the Fence
Home Consultant added a row of planters on top of the wall separating the neighbors' property. The fluffy grasses and plants soften the driveway turned patio, are more pleasant for the neighbors than another layer of fencing, and add a touch of nature to the hard surfaces of the outdoor space.Continue to 16 of 50 below.
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Add Midcentury Modern Style
A midcentury modern-style pergola adds privacy to this backyard patio from A Beautiful Mess. The geometric design both obscures the house next door and helps to camouflage the car in the car port so that you can focus on relaxing on the sherbet-colored painted concrete patio.Continue to 17 of 50 below.
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Make It Just High Enough
The backyard of this Palm Springs property from Michelle Boudreau Design is landscaped with hedges that are just tall enough to obscure the windows of the house next door without completely hiding it, allowing the view of the surrounding mountains to steal the show. The patio itself is divided into zones that offer space for different groups to gather. A row of tall cacti on opposite corners of the fire pit help define the space while leaving it open.Continue to 18 of 50 below.
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Add an Awning + Curtains
This backyard patio from A Beautiful Mess has a canopy that gives it shelter from the elements and curtains that can be pulled when you want a bit of extra privacy.Continue to 19 of 50 below.
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Install a Wood Slat Fence
This warm and relaxing San Francisco patio and outdoor kitchen from Seed Studio Landscape Design features a tiled, wood-fired pizza oven and grill that is seamlessly integrated with vertical wood veneer slats that match the same tones as the horizontal wood fencing. A vibrant blue Moroccan-style backsplash adds some color and indoor sophistication, and light toned concrete pavers and integrated lighting adds modern polish and a pleasing nighttime ambiance.Continue to 20 of 50 below.
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Keep It Simple
Interior designer Maite Granda chose simple wood fencing around the periphery of this Florida property that fades into the background while adding privacy for the back patio, yard, and stone fire pit patio that is the centerpiece of the outdoor space, reached by a walkway.Continue to 21 of 50 below.
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Choose Large Plants
Blanco Bungalow chose large scale plants to add privacy to the fire pit and banquette seating in this Los Angeles backyard. The giant leaves add drama and help give the space a sheltered feel.Continue to 22 of 50 below.
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Grow Thick Hedges
Thick hedges add privacy and a vibrant splash of natural greenery and color on the edges of this large, neutral-toned patio from Living With Lolo that includes a fire pit area, small outdoor kitchen, and pool.Continue to 23 of 50 below.
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This patio from Mindy Gayer Design Co. takes a light approach by adding just enough privacy so that you can relax when seated without trying to block all the neighboring houses from view. A row of boxwood hedges behind the L-shaped sectional is just a head above the back of the seating, and can be left to grow wild or pruned to retain an open, semi-private feel.Continue to 24 of 50 below.
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Horizontal wood fencing around the periphery of this lounge-y San Francisco back patio from Seed Studio Landscape Design adds contrast with the concrete of the outdoor bar and fire pit and warmth against the cool contemporary furnishings. Lush plantings on the other side of the fence add greenery and softness.Continue to 25 of 50 below.
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Layer It Up
A privacy fence, bushy trees, and a poolside cabana that feels like a room within a room give this large outdoor space from Cathie Hong Interiors a private feel.Continue to 26 of 50 below.
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Plant at Various Heights
This small detached front fire pit patio from Brophy Interiors is sheltered by shrubs that protect the seating area from unwanted views, while native grasses fill in the space, and trees offer shade and cover.Continue to 27 of 50 below.
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Add a Freestanding Wall
An L-shaped wood slat wall shields the fire pit and seating area of this rooftop patio from Seed Studio Landscape Design, helping control wind and adding privacy to a corner of the open space located in a dense and hilly San Francisco neighborhood.Continue to 28 of 50 below.
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Hang Some Breezy Curtains
This outdoor patio from Fantastic Frank has a rattan canopy and billowing white gauze curtains around the periphery to shield harsh rays and add a sense of privacy and comfort to the outdoor dining space either day or night. Warm woods and natural textures add contrast with the patio flooring, and a few black accents add a graphic note.
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In this Northern California backyard from Cathie Hong Interiors, a high fence keeps the large outdoor space feeling private. On a small freestanding patio, a concrete and wood L-shaped banquette creates a sense of privacy from the rest of the space, making it more inviting to use.Continue to 30 of 50 below.
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Keep Furniture Low
Low slung seating hugs the high wood-clad retaining walls of this spacious rooftop patio from Seed Studio Landscape Design, creating a sense of privacy around the fire pit despite being surrounded by the urban jungle.Continue to 31 of 50 below.
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Plant a Container Garden
Fantastic Frank added a raised garden bed to this ground floor apartment patio that provides space for a small vegetable garden and a place to train vines that will eventually add extra privacy from passersby in the courtyard.Continue to 32 of 50 below.
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Fence-in the Front Yard
For those with more yard in front than behind, or who want to turn a large front yard into a usable grown-up space that doesn't require watering or mowing, consider creating an urban fortress by putting up a wall. Home Consultant added 6-foot-high fencing on all sides of this front yard patio to create a private space that includes a wood deck and a gravel patio with a small fire pit seating area, optimizing the space.Continue to 33 of 50 below.
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Rooftop Privacy Planters
This rooftop patio from Fantastic Frank has sweeping ocean views. But the price of a million-dollar view can be the sense that you are on display, too. An easy and stylish solution to this problem is to line the periphery of the patio with a row of privacy planters that create a green screen from neighboring buildings and makes the seating and dining areas feel more relaxing to use without producing a fishbowl effect.
Continue to 34 of 50 below.
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Decorate the Fence
Get creative and strategically decorate your privacy fence so it doesn't feel too stark or foreboding. Arbor & Co. added high fencing to keep this converted driveway patio private from the next door neighbor, and hung a group of decorative woven baskets on the wall behind the outdoor sofa to anchor the seating area.Continue to 35 of 50 below.
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Decorative Screen + Hedging
This long and narrow patio-style deck from Fantastic Frank is a few steps down and visible from the living room, making it important to keep it looking as polished as the interior. To keep it feeling private, a decorative Moroccan-style lattice screen runs the length of the long wall, with bushes on the outside to keep it completely private from the next door neighbors.
Without the bushes, this type of privacy screen can add a decorative element that filters the light, creating interesting shadows depending on the time of day and providing partial privacy where you need it.
Continue to 36 of 50 below.
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DIY Wood Slat Privacy Fence
A Beautiful Mess made a DIY privacy fence from white lattice strips that also serves as a vertical wall to hang plants. The simple fencing adds privacy without totally blocking views from the inside, keeping the outdoor seating area feeling open and bright.Continue to 37 of 50 below.
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Try a Bamboo Screen
You don't need a huge outdoor space to create a cozy outdoor living room fit for afternoon reading or cocktails under the stars. This Mallorca apartment from Fantastic Frank has an ultra-private terrace thanks to high walls and some inexpensive bamboo fencing that blends in perfectly with the setting for a seamless look. A leafy potted plant, rattan furniture with vintage vibes, pale blue and white textiles, and LED string lights turn the space into an urban oasis that's easy on the eyes and the budget.Continue to 38 of 50 below.
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Hide Beneath the Hedge
Dazey Den placed a small outdoor seating area comprised of white painted vintage rattan outdoor furniture in the shadow of a large hedge that provides both privacy and much-needed shade in the desert setting.Continue to 39 of 50 below.
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Zone It Off
This outdoor patio from interior designer Maite Granda uses different solutions to add privacy to different zones of the outdoor Florida space. This includes a covered outdoor sitting area with open sides and a wood slat roof awning and wall near the outdoor kitchen that provides shade and privacy. And a cozy elevated outdoor living room space has a cozy seating arrangement in shades of gray and white, an overhead ceiling fan, and a pair of curtains flanking the entrance that give it a VIP room vibe.Continue to 40 of 50 below.
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Turn Up the Volume
This NYC apartment patio from Manscapers used generous plantings in neat contemporary gray planters around the periphery to provide privacy from neighboring buildings and to create an urban garden setting for the space that is set up like an outdoor living room.Continue to 41 of 50 below.
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White Painted Lattice Panels
Kate Marker Interiors surrounded this outdoor patio seating area with high white painted lattice panels on the periphery of a half pergola supported by decorative columns that add privacy while retaining an open and airy feel. The lake cottage patio is covered with gravel and outfitted with Adirondack chairs to give it a cozy feel.Continue to 42 of 50 below.
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Plant a Tree
Interior designer and blogger Anita Yokota added wood accents with hanging plants around a large tree to add privacy and style to her backyard space. Then she defined her outdoor living room in a large backyard by installing a pergola, U-shaped seating, and anchoring it with an area rug.Continue to 43 of 50 below.
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Turn Your Back
To preserve a sense of privacy without blocking views on an outdoor patio or balcony, position seating facing in, like this outdoor space by Design Lines Signature that is accessorized with bright floral throw pillows and neutral outdoor furniture.Continue to 44 of 50 below.
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Paint the Fence
Dazey Den painted a sunny bright yellow circle on the fence that adds a touch of decor that is only visible from one side, adding personality to the privacy fence that anchors a seating area that feels like a secret but gets the job done.Continue to 45 of 50 below.
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This backyard pool patio and dining space from Fantastic Frank has built-in layers that turn it into a private and inviting space with the allure of a boutique hotel. A long banquette has a high back to keep it private and cozy, while a wooden canopy roof protect it from the elements.Continue to 46 of 50 below.
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Add a Curved Hedge
A Beautiful Mess added a tall, thick, curved half-circle hedge that hugs the pool patio Jacuzzi, providing a total sense of privacy from beyond the fence and defining the space from the adjacent pool.Continue to 47 of 50 below.
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Add a Canopy Roof
Blanco Bungalow added a canopy that shelters this outdoor patio seating area from the elements while adding extra privacy. The white-washed structure practically disappears against the light palette of the boho-style decor.Continue to 48 of 50 below.
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Stagger the Fencing
Home Consultant added staggered height fencing around this small gravel backyard patio that is adapted to the space, ensuring that there is adequate privacy from prying eyes without making the small space feel too closed in.Continue to 49 of 50 below.
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Add a Pop Up Canopy
A pop-up canopy is a simple way to add privacy to your patio. This driveway turned patio designed by Ajai Guyot for Emily Henderson Design frames a dining room set for a special meal, with tie-back curtains that can be closed for an extra layer of privacy.Continue to 50 of 50 below.
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The outdoor patio dining area can be completely covered once the canopy is closed. The warm tones of the fabric create an atmospheric glow inside, encouraging guests to linger until the candles blow out.
What can I put around my patio for privacy?
You can add privacy to your patio with outdoor curtains, an overhead tarp, a canopy, a high fence, hedges, latticework, or a trellis and/or pergola covered in climbing ivy. Create a sense of privacy in a large open patio with a cabana-style seating area or an outdoor canopy daybed with curtains. The amount of privacy that you need or want depends on you, so be sure to pick an option that will provide total privacy if that's what you need, or look for flexible solutions that can offer more privacy when you need it and disappear when you don't.
How can I make my patio private on a small budget?
Hang inexpensive billowy outdoor curtains around the edge of a small patio that can be drawn when you need privacy and tied back when you do not. Create a privacy screen from a row of large planters, or enclose your seating area with a lattice or bamboo screen.