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Pergolas are a wonderful addition to any back garden or outdoor space. They provide shade on hot summer days and can be decorated to provide a beautiful focal point for your outdoor space. But what do you do when the sun starts to set and you still want to enjoy your Pergola? That's where lighting comes in! With a few strategically-placed lights, you can turn your Pergola into a cosy outdoor retreat that's perfect for entertaining or relaxing after a long day.

Here are our top tips for lighting up your Pergola. So, read on and get inspired!

Hanging lights lighting up a garden and giving a cosy atmosphere.

Choose the right type of lighting for your Pergola

Choosing the right type of lighting for your Pergola can be the most essential part! You firstly need to decide which type of lighting you like the look of and what mood you desire to create. If you are going to be hosting a few date nights, then fairy lights and a bucket full of candles may be your go-to!

If you are going to be hosting ‘bring a platter’ nights with your friends, then hanging lights are perfect for capturing the elegant vibe. If you simply would like to just veg out with a movie under starlight, then lanterns may be a winner. The sky's the limit and the list of lights for your Pergola are endless, let’s check out a few of our favourites…

Different types of lighting for your Pergola

Fairy lights

Fairy lights are by far the most popular choice for outdoor lighting, and for good reason too! They are relatively cheap to buy, easy to install and give off a magical vibe that is perfect for any setting. If you are looking to create a romantic atmosphere, then fairy lights are definitely the way to go.

String lights

String lights are very similar to fairy lights in that they are also relatively cheap to buy and easy to install. The main difference between the two is that string lights are typically larger in size and give off a brighter light. If you are looking for something that will give your Pergola a bit of extra light, then string lights may be a go-to.

LED lights

LED lights are becoming increasingly popular for outdoor lighting as they are very energy efficient. If you are looking for a light that will save you money in the long run, then LED lights are the way to go. Plus, they give off a ridiculous burst of light!

Hanging lights

Hanging lights are a great way to add some extra light to your Pergola without breaking the bank. They are typically very easy to install and can be found in a variety of different styles. If you are looking for a light that is both stylish and functional, then hanging lights are the way forward, and of course, you can hang them!

Pendant lights

Pendant lights are another great option for outdoor lighting, these types of lights tend to individually hand down and light up a specific area. If you are hosting dinner parties, hanging pendant lights over your dining table will accentuate the area. Using three or more pendant lights will be beneficial in covering a larger space.

Post lights

Post lights are a fun way of adding light to your Pergola, these lights are typically wrapped around the post of your Pergola, giving that cosy and inspiring look around all parts of your Pergola!


If you are really looking to transform your garden and lift the energy, as well as creating a complete and utter cosy vibe and illuminating your outdoor space - lanterns are for you!

Curtain lights

If you have a Pergola with curtains, then purchasing some curtain lights can add that bit of something extra! Curtain lights typically run vertical and can come in all lengths for your convenience. They also usually come with a timer and a dimmable option, making them both safe and versatile, as well as easy to use.

String lights lighting up a garden and creating a cosy atmosphere.

Create a mood with Pergola lights

Now that you know which types of lights you can dress up your Pergola with, it is time to focus on the mood and the environment you are looking to create with your lit-up Pergola. Here are some examples of how you can create your outdoor sanctuary by adding a couple of lights to your Pergola.

Create ambience with string lights

String lights are a classic way to add light to any outdoor space. They come in a variety of colours and sizes, so you can customize them to fit your pergola and create the perfect ambience. For a romantic look, try hanging string lights in different colours from the beams of your pergola.

If you're going for a more festive look, try clustering multiple strings of lights together. And if you really want to make a statement, try hanging string lights from the posts of your pergola all the way to the ground. No matter how you choose to hang them, string lights are an easy and effective way to add light to your pergola.

Use lanterns for additional lighting

As noted above, lanterns are a no-brainer when it comes to lighting up your Pergola. You can hang them from the beams or posts, or place them on tables or shelves. For added interest and cosiness, try using lanterns of different sizes and heights. You can also play with different types of lanterns, such as metal lanterns, glass lanterns, or even battery-operated lanterns. With so many options available, it's easy to find the perfect lanterns to fit your style and needs.

Create the mood with curtain lights

Having curtains around your Pergola can be a great way to create more privacy and cosiness, however, you can give it that something extra with hanging curtain lights. With Pergola curtain lights, you can feel like you’re in your own little enclosed starlight retreat. If you’re hosting an outside banquet or even a hot tub soiree, curtain lights are for you.

A cosy garden lantern lighting up an outdoor living space.

Tips and tricks for lighting up your Pergola

Add motion-sensor lights for safety and security

In addition to providing ambient lighting, motion-sensor lights are also a great way to improve safety and security around your home. They can be placed near walkways or stairs leading up to your pergola so that you (and your guests) can see where you're going after dark. Motion-sensor lights can also deter burglars by making it difficult for them to approach your home unnoticed.

Use solar lights

Using solar lights is a great option for those who are looking for an environmentally friendly way of lighting up the garden! They are powered by the sun, so you will never have to worry about them running out of batteries. If you are looking for a light that is both eco-friendly and stylish, then solar lights are the way to go. They can also come in a plethora of shapes, styles and sizes.

With a few strategically placed lights, you can turn your pergola into a beautiful and functional outdoor space that can be enjoyed day or night. So don't let the darkness keep you from enjoying your pergola! Try out some of these lighting ideas and enjoy your outdoor retreat well into the night.


Q: Can you put fairy lights in a Pergola?

A: Yes, fairy lights are one of the most popular types of lights to use in a Pergola. They can be draped across the beams or wrapped around posts to create a magical and romantic ambience.

Q: What are string lights?

A: String lights are another popular type of light to use in a Pergola. They can be used to create different patterns and designs. String lights are also very versatile and can be used for both indoor and outdoor Pergolas.

Q: What are pendant lights?

A: Pendant lights are a type of light that hangs from the ceiling. They are often used to create a focal point in the Pergola or to highlight certain areas. Pendant lights come in a variety of styles and can be made from different materials such as glass, metal, or even paper.

Q: How do I choose the right type of light for my Pergola?

A: The type of light you choose for your Pergola will depend on the look you are trying to achieve. Fairy lights and string lights are great for creating a romantic and magical ambience, while pendant lights can add a more dramatic look. Choose the type of light that best suits the overall style of your Pergola.

Q: How do I install Pergola lights?

A: Installing Pergola lights is relatively easy. Fairy lights and string lights can simply be draped across the beams or wrapped around posts. Pendant lights will need to be attached to the ceiling of your Pergola. Follow the instructions that come with your lights to ensure proper installation.

Q: How do I maintain my Pergola lights?

A: Fairy lights and string lights can be taken down and stored away during the winter months. Pendant lights will need to be removed and cleaned on a regular basis to prevent dust buildup. Follow the instructions that come with your lights for proper care and maintenance.

Q: How long do Fairy lights last?

A: Fairy lights are designed to last for many years. However, if they are not properly cared for, they may only last a few seasons. Be sure to follow the instructions that come with your lights to ensure proper care and maintenance.

Q: What are some other uses for string lights?

A: String lights can also be used to decorate weddings, parties, and other special events. They are versatile decorations that can be used in a variety of ways.

Q: What are some different pergola lighting ideas?

A: Lanterns, candles, and LED lights are all great options for Pergola lighting and not your usual go-to!

Q: How do I hang lanterns on my Pergola?

A: There are a few different ways that you can hang lanterns on your Pergola. You can use lantern hooks, zip ties, or even fishing lines.

Q: How do I keep my lanterns from blowing away?

A: You can add weights to the bottom of your lanterns or you can secure them with zip ties.

Q: What are some good pergola lighting ideas for a party?

A: lanterns, candles, and LED lights are all great options for Pergola lighting at a party. You can even string up some fairy lights for a magical touch.

Q: Will lanterns give off enough light?

A: It depends on the lantern. If you want a brighter light, go for an LED lantern. If you’re looking for a softer light, then a candle lantern would be a better option.

Q: I’m worried about lanterns starting a fire. What should I do?

A: Lanterns can be safe if you take the proper precautions. Make sure to always use lanterns that are made out of fire-resistant materials and never leave them unattended.



Let There Be Light! Tips for Lighting Up Your Pergola

28 Sept 2022
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