Pergolas vs. Patios - What's the Difference?

Patio Design Ideas

You might have heard about how you can really make the most of your outside space with a pergola, but just what is that thing? And what makes it different from its more famous cousin, the patio?

Before you go running for the dictionary or garden encyclopedia, take a look at our handy guide below. We've outlined the differences between these two garden features, and explained exactly how each one can really bring out the best in your garden or outdoor entertaining area.


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The primary difference between a pergola and a patio is in its purpose. A patio is traditionally designed to expand the usable space of your home, turning your garden or outside space into an additional room.

A pergola, on the other hand, is designed to be an intrinsic and enhancing feature of the garden, beautifying it and making it more versatile.

Traditionally these structures are ornamental and designed to enhance the aesthetics of the garden area. They are also usually free-standing, although they may also be attached to the wall of the property or to another structure. Modern pergolas can be made of wood, metal or polycarbonate plastics.

Pergolas are versatile and dynamic structures which can be made as open or as enclosed as you want them to be. If you seek some extra privacy for your outdoor gatherings, simply invest in some climbing or trailing plants to create a natural partition.

Alternatively, you can use temporary and portable screens that can be removed or replaced as you see fit. Perhaps you want to add versatility to your garden area, in which case you can use a shaded pergola alongside an open plan lawn or patio to gain a more varied effect.

You can add splashes of colour with flowering plants, use your own choice of garden furniture and experiment with different wood stains and effects to achieve an outdoor space which is as aesthetically pleasing as it is practical.

A pergola is a truly great way to extend your living space and to really get the most out of your garden or outdoor area. Whether you want to make your property in Perth more attractive to prospective buyers, or simply augment your own enjoyment of your garden, a pergola is an ideal choice.

Benefits of a Pergola

  • Adding privacy to gardens that are overlooked by other properties
  • Making your outdoor space more dynamic and varied
  • Adding a touch of individual style to your garden


A patio is perfect for extending your valuable living space into your outdoor or garden area. These classic garden features can trace their roots back to when the Moorish rulers of Andalusia in modern-day Spain first began experimenting with decorative courtyards for their villas and palaces.

Modern outdoor patio designs are perfect for providing a custom-made venue for gatherings, parties or even just for relaxing in the sun.

A basic patio is an area of flat, paved ground, usually directly adjoining the outside wall of your property.

You can increase the enjoyment you receive from your patio by incorporating patio plants, for example, by installing a trellis with climbing plants on an adjoining wall, adding small planting troughs or plant pots to give the space some colour, or by including some garden furniture to make the patio more usable and versatile.

Perth's sunny climate makes a patio more than just important, it makes it a necessity! With a patio, your garden is transformed from a pleasant outdoor space to an extra room ready and waiting for use all year round. Can you imagine having friends over on a glorious sunny day without a patio? Exactly, you can't!

Benefits of a Patio

  • Giving a more spacious feel to smaller houses with an extra ‘outdoor room’
  • Hosting sunny garden gatherings to shield you from the elements; rain, hail or shine
  • Adding value to your home


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