What’s the Best Type of Gazebo for Your Backyard?

Lounging in the shade of your own personal paradise. Inviting friends and family to spend quality time together. Or holding a celebration to remember, complete with delicious food and drinks.

However you plan to use your gazebo, it’s sure to add joy and character to your home. There’s just one small issue… There are so many styles and materials to choose from that it’s tough to find the best type of gazebo for your backyard!

That’s why we’ve prepared this short guide to help you find your ideal model. Below, you’ll find clear information about the different designs, materials, and features of popular gazebos, meaning you can pick your favorite with ease.

Types of gazebos

Soft-top gazebos

Soft-top gazebos are made from flexible materials such as fabric, mesh, and plastic. Since they’re lightweight, they’re fairly easy to assemble and disassemble. That makes them a great choice if you only plan to use your gazebo during certain months, want to move it around, or switch homes regularly.


  • Cheaper than hardtop gazebos
  • Portable and easy to take down
  • Great for renters or short-term residents


  • Poor resistance against wind, rain, and snow
  • Offers shade, but doesn’t block or retain heat
  • Not as durable as hardtop


soft top gazebo


Hardtop gazebos

As a type of permanent outdoor gazebo, hardtop models are made from sturdy materials like wood or metal. They offer fantastic protection against the elements and are resistant to wear, making them suitable for year-round use. You can also add a fire pit or grill without worrying about heat or smoke damage.


  • Incredibly durable, even in harsh weather
  • Stays cool in summer and protects you from the elements in the winter
  • Timeless designs that complement your home


  • More expensive than soft-top gazebo options
  • More permanent in nature, so harder to disassemble and move around


hard top gazebo


Typical gazebo materials


The biggest benefit of wood gazebos is their stunning, elegant appearance. They’re strong enough to withstand intense weather, and are finished to be rust-, water- and insect-proof. While natural materials require more upkeep and must be stained and sealed regularly, they can still look amazing after a decade of heavy use.

Popular woods for wooden gazebos include:

  • Cedar: Its pinkish-red hue makes cedar a beautiful material for wood gazebos. It’s soft and light, but incredibly durable, and its natural resins make it resistant to rot, decay, and insects even with zero maintenance. Cedar also doesn’t absorb moisture easily, making it an excellent choice in humid or wet climates. While slightly more expensive than other options, a little extra spending gets you a gazebo that looks amazing for many years to come.
  • Teak: This tropical hardwood is strong, long lasting, and highly resistant to bugs, decay, and weather. Add to that its deep, warm dark-brown tones, and you can expect a truly captivating gazebo. That said, teak is rather expensive and needs to be oiled every three months or so, which means a lot of time spent on maintenance.
  • Pressure-treated pine: The fact that pine is one of the cheapest materials around makes it a common choice for wood gazebos. But that comes at the cost of lower resistance to rot and decay, and the need for chemical treatment and regular maintenance to ward off pests. Nonetheless, the attractive pale-yellow coloration of pressure-treated pine makes it a good fit for almost any backyard.
wood gazebo


In general, metal gazebos are extremely durable and stable while requiring very little maintenance. They also don’t fade in the sun and don’t rot when exposed to moisture.

There are three main types of metal gazebos:

  • Galvanized steel: Despite their incredible strength, galvanized-steel gazebos are still very affordable. They’re designed to be rustproof and offer much greater durability than aluminum and wrought iron.

  • Aluminum: Lightweight and inexpensive, aluminum offers a balance between sturdiness and affordability. Aluminum gazebos are often powder coated in a wide variety of colors, which makes them resistant to chipping, fading, and wearing. What you gain in cost savings, you pay in shorter longevity and lower durability.

  • Wrought iron: These are the heaviest and sturdiest types of metal gazebos. While wrought iron isn’t naturally rustproof, most gazebo retailers supply them fully painted. However, you will need to touch up the paint if it’s chipped or scratched.


metal gazebo


Find your dream gazebo with Backyard Discovery

A quick online search will take you to plenty of retailers who sell soft-top and pop-up gazebos. But when it comes to high-quality weather-resistant permanent outdoor gazebos in beautiful cedar wood and stylish galvanized steel, Backyard Discovery is always the top choice.

Our zero-maintenance wood and metal gazebos are finely crafted using the best methods and materials available. We test and certify our gazebos’ resistance to snow, wind, and heat, and each one offers a level of stability and durability that others can’t hope to match. They even feature heat-reducing roof technology to limit heat loss by up to 20 degrees, letting you relax outside in any climate.

When you buy a permanent outdoor gazebo from Backyard Discovery, we give you an industry-leading five-year warranty for total peace of mind. And once it arrives, you can put it up with ease thanks to our interactive supported-assembly app. Then, simply arrange your furniture, connect your devices to our exclusive PowerPort USB ports and outlets, and get ready to relax.

Visit our online store to explore a wide variety of wood and metal backyard gazebos, and pick out your very own slice of heaven.


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