Tutorial: Build an amazing DIY pergola and fire pit with swings

Do you feel like something’s missing from your backyard? Looking for a place to host all your friends and family? A pergola might be just what you’re looking for. And you can even build your own with ease!

A pergola is similar to a gazebo, but without a roof. It’s usually a shaded walkway or sitting area made of wooden posts and a cross section of beams. They often are covered in vines or other plants to make a ‘roof’. Here’s how you can create the backyard you’ve always dreamed of.

Where to Start

How long you need

This project can take anywhere from a weekend to two weeks depending on how many people you have, skill level, and availability.

What you need


  • Measuring tape
  • 4’ level
  • Mason’s line
  • Marking paint
  • Speed square
  • Reciprocating saw
  • Corded drill
  • 12” long ½” bit
  • Skill saw/circular saw
  • Drill driver
  • Rotary level (optional)
  • Auger
  • Post hold digger
  • Shovel


  • Seventeen 6x6x12’ pressure treated pine beams
  • Ten 2x10x12’ pressure treated pine beams (wood)
  • Two 2x6x12’ pressure treated pine beams
  • Two corbels
  • Two bags of quick setting concrete per post
  • 100-125 stone landscape blocks
  • Landscape adhesive
  • Twelve ½”x10” eye bolt with nut
  • 5lb box of 4” exterior decking screws
  • Five glass bulb string lights (optional)


Total cost ranges from $2000-5000 depending on where you buy things, tool rentals, material choices and potential labor costs. The pergola itself can cost around $1300 for all material except seating and lighting.