Outdoor Pathway Lighting Ideas: From Post Lights To String and Tiki Torches

Pathway lighting is ideal in a garden as it adds to the safety and the visual appeal. The following outdoor pathway lighting ideas can help you create a well designed outdoor space – we go over everything from standard post lights to pergola lighting and string lights.

Post Light Fixtures

Post lights are the most popular form of outdoor pathway lighting because they are simple fixtures that come in a number of styles. They are usually short which reduces glare and can be easily installed as solar powered or low voltage pathway lighting.

pathway lighting

Post lights are the popular choice for pathway lighting

Post path lights

The post lights are capped so they only shine light downwards

modern outdoor pathway lighting

Modern outdoor pathway lighting

japanese lantern

Another style: Japanese lanterns

solar path lighting

Solar path lights

street lights

Street lights: taller post lights

Recessed Pathway Lighting

Recessed floor lights are another way of lighting up a path. Though they look modern and elegant, they can produce a lot of glare as they shine upwards. One way of reducing the glare is to have a diffused cover like in the first picture below:

recessed floor lights

Recessed floor lights

floor lights

Another example of recessed floor lights

Outdoor Wall Lights

If you have any walls lining your pathway, these can be used to fix lights onto. You can either use recessed wall lights, flush mount or lanterns and wall sconces.

pathway lighting

Those black circles on the walls are flush mount lights that will light up the path at night

flush mount path lighting

Flush mount path lighting

A wall lantern

Another way to light a path is to use wall lanterns

wall sconces

Wall sconces make for more modern outdoor wall lights

 The wall sconces above can be found here on Amazon.

Pillar Lighting

Pillar lighting is when you have a light fixture on a solid base. These bases, or pillars, can be short so that the lights shine on a path or the pillars can be tall to light the entrance of a driveway.

pillar lights

Pillar lights lighting up a pathway

pillar lights

Another example of pillar lights

railing lights

Pillar lights on a railing

Outdoor Step Lighting

recessed step lights

Recessed step lights

If you have any steps along your path there are a few lighting ideas that can be used to light these areas – like lip lighting, recessed or downlights. Have a look at our post here for 5 outdoor stair lighting ideas.

String Lights

String lights are inexpensive fixtures that can come as electric powered or solar pathway lighting fixtures. You can use them to light up pathways by hanging them from trees, fences, the house walls, and polls.

string lights

String lights hanging from a tree lighting a path

string lights

String lights hanging from the walls


If you have a pergola over a section of your path they can have lights attached to them. If you don’t have one, they can be nice additions to a garden. During the day they provide shade, and at night they look great lit up.

There are a number of pergola lighting ideas for a pathway:

  • You can attach lanterns to the posts
  • Recessed lights can be installed into the posts
  • String lights can be wrapped around the overhead beams and the posts
  • Lights can be fixed to the overhead beams
hanging pergola lights

Hanging pergola lanterns

Tiki Torches

Tiki torches can line a pathway and provide soft glowing light. It can be a hassle to light a number of torches individually – an alternative is to install gas burning tiki torches that can be switched on all at once from a central valve.

tiki torch

Tiki torches can be used to light outdoor pathways

Led Pathway Lighting Using Rope Lights

Rope lights are led lights incased within a plastic tube. Because the tube is flexible, rope lights can bend and be shaped how you like. They can be fitted along railings or lined along the perimeter of a garden bed.

rope lights

Rope lights can be used in a number of ways to light pathways

Indirect Outdoor Pathway Lighting

Lighting other areas of a garden can help light a pathway. For example in the photos below, trees and plants have been lit up with spot lights, swimming pool and pond lights also provide indirect path lighting.

pathway lighting

Lighting trees and bushes provides indirect lighting for pathways

indirect lighting

Another example of indirect lighting

tree lighting

Tree lighting

Other Photos For More Outdoor Pathway Lighting Ideas

outdoor path lighting

Outdoor path lighting

pathway lighting

Decorative star lights

outdoor path lighting

Post lights and string lights wrapped around the tree branches light up this pathway

image credits


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