Ideas + Inspiration

Path Lighting Ideas

Path lighting has to be practical, functional, and pleasing to the eye. Path lights have the important job of increasing visibility and safety at night. They set boundaries for walkways, gardens, and yards to keep guests on the right track. Pathway lights also play a role in elevating the atmosphere of your outdoor space and illuminating your landscaping. Whether you are looking for contemporary sidewalk lighting or want to brighten the garden by your driveway, take a look at some of these excellent ideas to get some inspiration for your path lighting.

Evenly Spaced

Ciclope Outdoor LED Path Light from Artemide

If your pathway features dark or gray stone or concrete, consider using white path lights that will easily stand out. Space the path light evenly on both sides of the walkway to ensure each step is well-lit. Path lights that cast illumination on angle will cover more area for wide pathways.

All About Angles

Chilone Outdoor LED Floor Lamp from Artemide

Even your outdoor lighting can look smart and modern. If you are looking for path lighting with a contemporary theme, choose walkway lights with geometric structures such as clean lines and hard angles. Tall, angled path lights feature sleek aesthetics and offer more illumination coverage.

Mix Modern and Rustic

Path Arc LED Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

Path lighting can set just the right mood for guests entering your modern country estate. Add a bit of rustic appeal to your contemporary abode by choosing path lights with traditional elements. Smaller, black walkway lights can offer a bit of that vintage vibe, while blending in with 21st-century style.

Set the Mood

Revel LED Path Light from Tech Lighting

Certain path lights are better at creating mood lighting. If you want to illuminate a smaller pathway, while adding a soft, warm glow to the atmosphere, choose short bollard lights that will concentrate the light downwards. This also helps highlight your landscaping such as the edge of your front yard or walkway flowers.

Look Both Ways

Revel LED Path Light from Tech Lighting

Use path lighting to show off your beautiful front garden. Position path lights between the walkway and your garden to create a distinct boundary. Some modern path lights beam light through slots in both directions, which is perfect when you are trying to illuminate a walkway and show off that lovely landscaping at the same time.

Walkway by Candlelight

Harbor Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

There is nothing more enchanting then a candlelit lantern. If you want to add some of that traditional charm, choose a path light that offers a lantern aesthetic to add an intimate feel to the entrance of your home. These types of path lights look especially majestic against stone or brick architecture.

Don’t Sacrifice on Space

Saturn Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

Path lights are perfect to light up outdoor seating areas and patios. If you don’t want to take away from your patio space, you can blend in tall path lights into the shubbery or landscaping. Look for walkways lights with a 360-degree coverage area to provide ambient lighting for the entire outdoor entertaining area.

Dressed Downlight

LED 12V Round Path Light from WAC Lighting

Downlights are a popular option because they provide large coverage areas to help you see when walking at night. You can’t go wrong with classic, black downlights since they will fit into any exterior landscaping. Make sure to stagger light on each side to light up the walkway evenly.

Be Unique

Hardy Island Wall Wash Spot Light from Hinkley Lighting

Let path lights show off your unique style for your modern home. If you’re looking for a distinct color, go with brass or bronze, since this reflects well with stone or wood architecture. If you want a rare feature, look for path lights with adjustable heads to customize the path lighting experience.

Maximize Minimalism

Atlantis 1518 Cedar LED Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

If you want to bring a sleek and modern look to your yard, choose walkway lights that are designed with a minimalist approach. You can tell by the geometric silhouette, clean lines, and organic forms of the design. Staggering lights on each side of the path also adds a minimalist appeal to your landscape lighting.

Step Lights on the Wall

Nuvi Landscape Step Light from Hinkley Lighting

One of the best ways to light up a walkway unobtrusively is to use step lights. Despite the name, step lights can be used on retaining walls, which is an easy way to add much needed illumination, especially when space is scare.

Stairway to Heaven

1547 Path Light by Hinkley Lighting

Although step lights are quite popular, path lights can also be used to safely light up outdoor stairs. Choose walkway lights that offer 360-degree ambient lighting, and stagger lights on both sides of the stairway to make sure there is enough illumination.

Adding Charm to Your Landscape

Hardy Island Hammered Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

Path lighting can be one of the best tools to brighten your walkway, accentuate your landscape, and add a bit of charm at the same time. Path lights with cone-like tops offer a traditional feel that will blend in with your landscape, while also reducing glare.

The Power of Spotlights

Hardy Island 1536 Accent Light from Hinkley Lighting

If you want to brighten certain features along your walkway such as arches or walls, spotlight path lights are an excellent choice. Adjustable spotlights enable you to position the light to highlight any area you want while seeming almost invisible.

The Bollard of the Future

Atlantis Round Outdoor Bollard from Hinkley Lighting

Pathway lighting is a great way to greet guests with a contemporary atmosphere. If you want to elevate your modern exterior, add some path lights with a futuristic design. A path light with minimalist style, such as bollards with hollow rectangular edges, can add a bit of space-age appeal to your front yard.

Keep It Balanced

Triform Outdoor LED Wall Sconce from SONNEMAN Lighting

Visual balance is just as important as layering outdoor lighting. You can easily add some visual symmetry to your entryway by choosing walkway lights and wall lights that complement each other. Try matching metal frames or using similar geometric styles.

Stay Simple

Atlantis Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

If you are looking for a classic walkway lighting solution that is simple and functional, choose path lights with that distinct L-shape. Path lights with these geometric angles bring a minimalistic approach to their design, meaning they will blend in with almost any modern outdoor space.

Enchanting the Garden

Hardy Island Standard Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

If you want to create the feeling of walking through an enchanted garden, choose downlights that are low to the ground. Short path lights that concentrate light downwards will emit a diffused, soft glow, creating a mystical atmosphere for stone or gravel garden walkways.

Proper Positioning

Atlantis Path Light from Hinkley Lighting

Path lights don’t have to be placed directly on the walkway to increase visibility. If you position walkway lights in a garden next to your pathway, you can safely light the way while highlighting your gorgeous landscaping at the same time.

Stepping On Up

Vitra Horizontal LED Step Light from Ambiance

Sometimes you simply don’t have room for large path lights. Step lights are an excellent alternative that can light up outdoor stairways without taking up any room. Use dual small step lights on every other step to properly increase visibility at night.

And there you have it: From bollards to spotlights, there are many different options when it comes to path lighting. Make sure the path lights you choose are suitable for outdoor conditions. Consider different bulb types, such as LED walkway lights, which offer powerful illumination in an energy-efficient manner. No matter what modern path lights you choose, you are sure to bring your landscape lighting to the next level.


For more YLighting ideas, see our Outdoor Lighting Ideas.

For even more, follow our favorite outdoor lighting ideas on Pinterest.


Team Y

Team Y

Each YLighting article is backed by the authority of the highest rated service team in the industry. Our design experts are ALA-certified (American Lighting Association) and have an average of 10+ years in the interior design, architectural lighting and home renovation industry. Chat on-line or give us a call toll-free.

Use #YintheWild to show us your modern space. VIEW GALLERY