As a kid, I loved nothing more than swimming in pools. We didn’t have one, but we biked to the local rec center that did have an outdoor pool. I spent days and days in pools and loved every minute of it. Even now as an adult, I love pools and almost always choose a hotel with a pool.
Interestingly, most pools built today don’t have the features they did when I was a kid (1980’s), specifically diving boards and slides. I suspect they are safety issues and homeowners opt not to have those features. That said, some backyard pools are more like mini-water park complexes with rock walls, caves, waterfalls and even water slides. These premium features add considerably to the cost, and not everyone likes the appearance of them, but they do offer more swimming features. You either like the look or don’t.
This gallery features a diverse range of swimming pools. Most are large, but some are small. We chose the small pools to demonstrate that you don’t need a large property in order to enjoy your own pool.
Many of our pools are in the backyards of homes in warmer climates, which makes sense because it can be used year-around. After all, spending $100,000 or more on a pool which you can use only 3 months a year doesn’t always make sense.
In my view, one aspect of backyard swimming pools is clear… and that is they really do look great. It’s not often a pool looks bad if it’s a decently design pool. Even above-ground pools can look great and be a ton of fun with a deck built around the top of it (this is a great way to enjoy your own pool inexpensively – in relation to the cost of an in-ground pool).
Luxury pool area surrounded by trees, rocks and grey flagstone patio. Pool patio is two levels and includes a slide.
Large white contemporary home with huge property including large backyard pool with red brick edge. Potted plants surround the pool.
Ornate contemporary home with rectangular pool with wrap-around patio and diving board. There’s a large elevated patio area adjacent to the pool.
Two-story modern L-shaped home wrapped around large backyard pool and hot tub. Garden and palm trees line the long pool along one side.
Infinity pool on cliff-side overlooking sagebrush landscape.
Craftsman style home with small pool in the courtyard.
Southwest style home with small lap pool overlooking desert mountain and countryside. The pool has 3 potted plants along one side and takes up much of the backyard. This pool is a great example of a small backyard accommodating a small pool.
Modern home on a golf course with backyard entirely patio and pool. Low hedge separates the home’s backyard from the golf course.
Rambling Spanish style home with ornate pool in the backyard surrounded by grass. The home has a covered patio extending the full width of the home.
Contemporary home with large pool and patio in the backyard along with several palm trees. Patio is both covered and uncovered. Home includes indoor-outdoor living space.
Modern home with huge covered patio adjacent to large pool complex that includes hot tub. Patio area includes outdoor kitchen.
Pool in large courtyard of modern ranch-style home with palm trees and hot tub. Several patio sitting areas scattered throughout the courtyard.
Small contemporary home with small backyard that is made up entirely of patio and swimming pool. Another good example of a small pool in a small backyard.
Backayrd pool with extensive gardens surrounding it along with a patio on 2 sides. Pool is steps away from the house.
This gorgeous home features an equally gorgeous pool. A stunning backyard waterfall is the only thing missing!
Terrific indoor/outdoor living with large covered patio leading to uncovered patio and large backyard pool. Pool is illuminated at night.
Small pool on the edge of a golf course bordered on one side with garden landscaping. Home has unobstructed view of the manicured golf course.
Cozy blue pool with iron and stucco railing on edge of cliff overlooking city and ocean. The pool is small with wrap-around patio.
The potted plant is an easy, low maintenance option when designing your perfect backyard space. Be sure and check out our feature on container gardens by clicking here!
Larger view of the cozy pool above.
Brightly lit home and pool with large outdoor patio. Extensive trees and plants dot the patio and surround the pool.
Simple oval pool with surrounding red brick patio. Pool is private from large tree hedge.
Modern home with entire backyard a pool and patio. Great deal of privacy from tall hedge. Glass fence is an added safety measure.
Long pool with Italian-villa style pool house. Pool is surrounded by extensive lawn and hedge.
Almost pond-like, this long pool almost seems like a natural part of the landscape.
Pool in a courtyard with the home wrapped around 3 sides and the fourth side being a tall wall for privacy. Much of the patio surrounding the pool is covered.
Small home on hillside with small dark blue pool surrounded by grass.
Contemporary two-story home on canal with the entire backyard a pool and patio. Adjacent to the pool is a long private dock. A boater’s perfect home.
Head-on view of the pool and home above.
View of the pool and water channel of the home above.
Cliff-side private pool on elevated balcony for condo owners overlooking the sea.
Luxury home with grey flagstone patio surrounding uniquely shaped pool and elevated hot tub. Ivy-covered pavilion adjacent to the pool provides covered outdoor seating.
Interesting elevated pool and patio design with hot tub overlooking sagebush landscape.
Small balcony pool. Another example of a small pool in a small place.
Infinity pool on the edge and overlooking the beach.