Landscaping For Holiday Homes. 

Landscaping For Holiday Homes. 

If you’re lucky enough to own a holiday home, you’ll know how tricky it can be to look after a garden that’s many miles from your own home. We’ve got some tips on landscaping for holiday homes that will make your life easier and save you a fortune on outsourced gardeners.

Landscaping For Holiday Homes.  How To Get It Right And Save Money On Maintenance


Creating A Warm Welcome And Managing Expectations

A holiday home garden has more than one purpose and the landscaping should reflect that.  First of all, if you are renting out your holiday home, the garden needs to ‘sell’ the property.  It needs to look good in all of your marketing pictures. But more importantly, it has to meet expectations when your guests arrive.  

It’s all very well to tidy up the plot to take promotional pics, but if your guests are actually met by a run down, overgrown plot, they’re going to be disappointed – which in turn, could affect your reviews.

For yourself, unless you are a fanatical gardener, you won’t want to arrive at your holiday home and immediately start mowing and weeding. That negates the whole point of a holiday.

If you and your guests are to enjoy every aspect of the property, the garden needs to be well maintained, safe, welcoming and relaxing.

holiday home with composite decking verandah and river views

Landscaping for holiday homes is all about accentuating the property’s good points (in this case, its that magnificent view), whilst providing extra living space.

The Most Important Elements In Landscaping For Holiday Homes

There’s a fine balance to be created with holiday home gardens. Low maintenance is a must, but sterile and unwelcoming is a definite no-no.  Artificial grass for example is like Marmite, some guests will hate it, others will understand why you have chosen it.  But artificial grass is not the only low maintenance landscaping material.  Let’s take a look at some holiday home essentials.

Off-Street Parking and Practical Paths

Not every holiday home has room for off street parking, but if there is a suitable space to the front or the side of the property it needs to look well cared for and inviting.  No potholes or puddles, no trip hazards and ideally the sort of surface that you can easily wheel a suitcase on. Aim to create a sturdy, well-lit path all the way from the driveway to the door, and make sure that any steps are in good condition.  If your property welcomes wheelchair users or people with reduced mobility – make sure that the driveway reflects that.  Create wide paths with a firm surface (not gravel!), avoid steps and make sure that ramps are not dangerously steep.  A set of atttactive handrails might be useful too.

Secure Fencing

This one is so important, especially if your holiday home welcomes dogs and young children. For some dog owners, a poorly fenced garden will mean that you miss out on their booking.  Fences also set boundaries, helping neighbours to feel more comfortable about having strangers in their midst.  Add some low maintenance climbing plants to make the fencing panels more attractive.


Again, gates help people to feel more secure in their environment.  Why not have a bespoke gate made to add character to your property?

Sunny Patio or Decking

Holidays should be about taking your drinks outside and soaking up the fresh air and sunshine. Position your patio carefully. How can you make the most of the views? What time of day should your patio catch the sun? Do you need more than one seating area to make the most of the garden?

small courtyard patio with seating area

A well appointed patio with furniture that can stay outdoors in all weathers, allows holiday makers to start enjoying the garden the moment they arrive.

Garden Furniture 

For a small space a bistro table and chairs is perfect. Make sure there are enough chairs for everyone though.  If the property sleeps 6, there should be at least 6 seats outside, otherwise you’ll find your best dining room chairs get dragged outdoors.

Storage Shed

It’s easy to tidy a garden if there’s somewhere to hide the clutter.  A small shed can house folding chairs, a parasol, barbecue grill, garden toys and even things like wetsuits, paddleboards and bikes if guests are bringing them.


Pergolas are great for summer as are trees.  Choose your trees wisely though. Come the autumn will you be able to sweep the leaves up? If not, maybe an evergreen species would be a more prudent choice?


Yes please! Use lighting to the garden a lovely holiday feel.  Festoon lights across the patio or fairy lights in trees will create a wonderful atmosphere and have paying guests re-booking your property time and time again.  


Lawns are optional.  If you are unable to mow them regularly and don’t want to pay a gardener to visit, then there are plenty of options for an alternative lawn.  Perhaps a gravel garden would be more suited to your space? Or how about a low maintenance species rich lawn?


Please don’t be fooled into thinking that all plants are high maintenance, they’re not. Plants create a wonderful atmosphere in a garden. They can fill the space with colour and scent. And they can add a feeling of peaceful privacy. For gardens that can’t be tended on a weekly basis, try to avoid plants in pots.  They’ll look dreadful if they are not watered regularly. Instead, ask a garden designer to create a planting scheme that will be beautiful AND manageable. Think of your planting plan as an investment. It will save you a fortune on replacing dead and dying plants every time your visit your holiday home. 

garden lighting for patio

Outdoor lighting is an important element of landscaping for holiday homes

Landscaping Your Holiday Home

In this day and age, we all need to be very aware of health and safety, nobody wants to be saddled with either a law suit or a bad reputation. A poorly landscaped garden is fraught with danger.  Uneven surfaces are a potential trip hazard, badly built decking can lead to accidents and dodgy drainage can make a garden unusable. 

Conversely, a professionally built garden will be safe, accessible AND attractive. What more could anyone want from a holiday home?

Landscaping for holiday homes should start with an epic garden design and be built by a thoroughly trustworthy landscaper. You could either – commission a garden design and then ask a landscaper to quote for the work, or you could contact a landscaper who offers a design and build service.  If your holiday home is not within easy travelling distance of where you live, you might find that the design and build option is easiest for you BUT you must have total trust in your contractors.

How can you tell if a landscaper is trustworthy?

Hire a landscaper who is a member of the Association of Professional Landscapers (APL). Not only is every member thoroughly vetted in all aspects of their business practices and their work, in the unlikely event that you are unhappy with the project, the APL have a very supportive mediation service.

Read the APL’s advice on finding a reputable landscaper in your area.  

Landscaping For Holiday Homes In Essex And Suffolk

Holland Landscapes are always happy to help you build a safe and beautiful garden for your East Anglian holiday home.  Together with Tapestry Design Studios, we offer a full garden design and build service encompassing project management, sourcing and procuring materials, hiring tradespeople such as electricians and keeping you up to date with progress on site.  

Take a look at our portfolio of work and feel free to contact us for an honest chat about landscaping for holiday homes.

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