8 outdoor fireplace ideas – modern and trad designs in stone, brick, with gas or wood

These outdoor fireplace ideas will see you sat in your garden for hours whether you go for a stone, brick or modern design – gas or wood burning.

Saunderson Wood Burning Chiminea
(Image credit: Wayfair)

If you tend not to use your garden much when its chilly then these outdoor fireplace ideas will help you reconsider. It is true that a cold and rainy night is probably best suited to spending it indoors (unless your outdoor area is covered), but a chilly evening no matter what season, enjoyed by a fire is wonderful. 

Outdoor fireplaces tend to be more substantial than fire pits and should be considered when you're planning on creating a the coziest of outdoor living spaces around. If you enjoy sitting outside for longer or have a larger family, it makes the perfect addition. 

Some outdoor fireplace designs can only really be achieved with the help of an architect, but many designs in this gallery are freestanding and don't require complex installation.

Are outdoor fireplaces worth it?

We spoke to Owen Pacey of Renaissance on why we're all so keen to add outdoor fireplaces to our backyards. He says 'Adding a beautiful period fireplace will really add the winning wow-factor.' It could even do wonders for your property value 'so while it’s important to enjoy the fireplace in situ, bear in mind that future buyers might just be lured in by this quirky, distinctive and stylish feature.'

'You can install any fireplace outdoors but I’d always recommend Bath Stone or Portland Stone for durability outside.' 

Pacey tells us that the size of your outdoor space doesn't matter, explaining that 'you don’t need a big garden to fit a fireplace outside. In fact, the scale of a fireplace can actually create the illusion of more space.'

1. Choose a traditional outdoor fireplace shape

Sunjoy A304001100 Gwendolyn Wood Burning Fireplace

(Image credit: Amazon)

Part of the enjoy of getting an outdoor fireplace is the traditional shape and brick structure – more substantial and imposing than just a patio heater. These things aren't small, so you'll want to position yours in the center of your patio, so choose a design you really like and a good-quality stone and steel finish.

2. Choose a see-through design for a contemporary look

Empire Comfort Systems Carol Rose Outdoor SS See-through 48" Linear Fireplace

(Image credit: Amazon)

Want a more streamlined, contemporary outdoor fireplace? Look for an electric or gas outdoor fireplace insert. These are rectangular stainless steel fireplaces that can be built into your garden wall (you will need professional help doing this). 

3. Or opt for a chimenea if your outdoor space is small

Saunderson Wood Burning Chiminea

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Chimeneas offer a great compromise for those who don't have much room for a huge outdoor fireplace. Chimeneas come in a wide variety of designs, but the most recognisable ones are the cone-shaped or chimney-shaped structures with log stores at the bottom. They will keep you warmer than fire pits but can still fit onto a tiny patio. 

4. Meet halfway 

Iolo Black Steel Wood Burning Chiminea

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Somewhere between a fire pit and a chiminea, this outdoor fireplace is super sturdy and modern in design, sure to elevate all styles of garden.

5. Keep yours wall mounted

Outdoor fireplace attached to the wall

(Image credit: EMIFOCUS )

You might not have the pool, but that's not to say you can't get a little fancy with an outdoor fireplace. This charming outdoor wood-burning wall fireplace makes the perfect visual from an outdoor dining area. We adore the visible vertical flue, making this super contemporary and chic. 

6. Zone your space with an outdoor fireplace

Gas outdoor fireplace: Kateri Aluminium Propane Gas Outdoor Fireplace

(Image credit: Wayfair)

This gas outdoor fireplace is gorgeously freestanding and see-through making it another modern option that would work really well to zone an outdoor lounge area too. Grab a glass of wine and your evenings are sorted.

7. Make it a focal point

Wood burning outdoor fireplace: La Hacienda Stonehurst Steel Outdoor Fireplace

(Image credit: Gardening for less)

It would be difficult to not focus on this steel outdoor fireplace with its trusty design and rustic finish (that will age well with a little surface rust for effect). Put yours in a prime location to stare at and watch it create the most impressive ambiance for you and any guests.

8. Stay vintage

RedFire Fireplace Jersey XL Steel Rust 81077

(Image credit: Mano Mano)

For a truly rustic look, this log burning outdoor fireplace hits the spot. It's a statement, has ample space to burn logs and the wide opening means that you will get a good ol' fire burning when you need it, we can visualize this style of outdoor fireplace in country house gardens everywhere. 

Can I build my own outdoor fireplace?

You certainly can build your own brick outdoor fireplace if you prefer a little DIY. According to Pacey, 'All you need to do is install the brickwork flue for the fireplace to be fitted. In terms of practicality, gas is the way to go without a doubt, especially in urban homes. It’s better for the environment and no grate cleaning required. One gust of wind blowing ashes around everywhere and you’ll agree with me.'

Time to get toasty.

Anna is Content Editor at Real Homes. She moved to the world of interiors from academic research in the field of English Literature and photography. She is the author of London Writing of the 1930s and has a passion for contemporary home decor and gardening. At Real Homes, she covers a range of topics, from practical advice to interior and garden design.