How to Hang a Hammock in 4 Easy Steps (all methods)

Very few things are better than rocking on a hammock chair and watching the sunset with a cool drink in hand after a tough week. Well, to be able to do that, we need to hang up the hammock chair first!

To hang a hammock chair outside, we must:

  1. Find a good spot (usually under a healthy tree branch or from a joist)
  2. Tie the rope to the branch or stand – and attach it to the hammock ring
  3. Set the height
  4. Test it before sitting

If you hang the hammock from a wall, then there’s an extra step: installing a metal rod. This will need to be done at the beginning.

That’s the condensed version, anyway. You’ll be happy to hear that it’s not difficult and anyone can do it if they stick to this guide. Let’s get started!

An image of A beige string swing with a pillow on a patio. Wicker baskets, a rug, and a blanket on a wooden deck in the garden.

Where Do You Hang a Hammock Chair Outside?

The ideal spot for a hammock outside would be just under a large shade tree, but it can also hang on a wall (a bit more complicated) or on a stand (included or improvised).

This is the first step – before buying a hammock or any equipment for hanging it, make sure to have a good spot for it.

An ideal spot in the yard (at least in my opinion) should have a large tree with thick, strong branches. It’d be great to have at least one straight branch, not reaching upwards, but an upwards-pointed branch won’t pose much of a problem. It’ll just make the hammock slightly angled, which can be fixed by adjusting the rope.

The most important thing about choosing a branch is ensuring it’s healthy. Dead branches are often called widow-makers as they can suddenly drop without warning – and kill anyone below it (source). Although they’re rotting, dead branches are still very heavy.

Hanging a hammock chair under a branch is best but not the only option. We can also hang it onto a wall, but we’ll have to improvise (using a strong metal rod) so that it can carry the weight.

We can also hang it on the terrace or the gazebo – using strong hooks and ensuring that the ceiling is strong enough to carry the weight.

Lastly, there’s the option of a stand. This option is better and safer than hanging the hammock chair on a wall. Some hammocks come with stands, while others will require an improvised stand or building one yourself.

You can also hang a hammock from ceiling joists, but it’s more like hanging a swing on a porch. If that’s more your goal, check out our article on How to Hang a Porch Swing with Rope (or chains).

How Do You Hang a Hammock Outside?

After buying the hammock and the rope, find the right branch and throw the rope over it. Tie the rope according to the hammock instructions and set the height. Finally, put some weight on the hammock before sitting on it.

Hanging a hammock chair under a tree is a one-person job (unless you’re hanging it under a high branch), and it’s usually done in less than twenty minutes.


Materials needed:

  • A hammock chair
  • Rope

Some hammock chairs come with plenty of rope. However, if that model doesn’t have a rope – make sure to buy enough strong rope. I’ve seen marine rope, paracord, and bungee cords used successfully. Just make sure they’re rated for the right weight.

Step 1 – Pick a spot

What’s a good hammock chair spot? There’s some room for personal interpretation here. Some people may want a sunny spot to read, while others want a shadier area to rest.

If you’re picking a tree branch to use as the hammock’s hanging point, it should be a thick branch with at least six feet of space between the branch and where it will hang. This will give you plenty of space for swinging

Remember that horizontal branches are easier to work with, provide better support for the hammock, and thus are less likely to break. This is especially important when weight is considered – pressure on the branch is greater if a heavier person sits on the hammock.

If you’re using a stand, you’ll be able to set it up almost anywhere, provided there’s room for the stand and hammock. Make sure there’s room on the sides for swinging.

Step 2 – Throw and tye the rope

Although many people think it would be safer to use two ropes instead of one to take the pressure off them, this is untrue.

The branch and the hook above the hammock experience the most pressure; if anything is going to break (and I hope it won’t), it’ll be the hook or the branch.

Use one rope and throw it over the branch twice – the two parts of the rope should be apart. After that, pull the rope through the hook above the hammock and tie it according to instructions.

This part is tricky and can’t be explained in an online guide as there are hammocks with different mechanisms. There are hammocks with a single ring, hammocks with an S system, hammocks with two rings, etc.

However, these hammocks have guides with clear instructions on safely tying the rope. Follow the instructions included with the particular hammock system.

Step 3 – Set the height

Here comes the most annoying part of the job – we might have to redo this again (and again). Since we can’t accurately gauge how much rope we need on the first try (unless you’re lucky), the hammock chair is likely hanging too low or too high after the first try.

Set the rope again, this time adding or shortening rope length, and you’ll get it right on the second try.

My first hammock hanging attempt took five or six tries, so don’t feel bad if it takes you a couple of tries, too.

Step 4 – Test the hammock

No matter how hard we pull on the rope knot, it won’t be entirely tightened until someone sits in the hammock. That’s why when someone sits for the first time and swings a bit; we’ll hear the knot tightening and the rope stretching.

The tester may even be afraid of falling due to these noises. However, this noise is a good sign, and odds are that no one will fall on the floor.

However, I’d suggest slowly adding weight to the hammock rather than jumping on it.

  • Firstly, put on something heavy, like a few weights or a stack of books. Let the books or weights stretch the knots and rope for you.
  • Consider adding a few more heavy objects to the hammock while it settles.

After that, it is okay for someone to try sitting on the hammock. Just no jumping on hammocks – ever.

Install the rod (if required)

If you’re going to be hanging the hammock from a wall, you’re going to need to install a metal rod. This is involved enough that we’ll explain what to do next.

You could also choose to install the rod into a ceiling joist if you’d rather have a ceiling-hanging hammock.

An image of a Stylish, trendy interior in Scandinavian style. A large wooden window sees a white macrame hammock.

How Do You Hang a Hammock Chair on the Wall?

Installing a hammock on a wall requires securing a rod into a weight-bearing wall or stud at a 90° angle before hanging the hammock. Unfortunately, these hammocks are sensitive to weight limits, and the rod can easily be ripped from the wall if the weight limit is exceeded.

Hanging a hammock on the wall is the most complicated out of all hanging options, and it would be best if it’s hung on a tree or a stand. It’s also the least safe option, and I would personally discourage anyone from doing this.

DIY Disclaimer: Every project is individual, and its success depends on the situation, the builder’s construction skills, the building’s integrity, and many other factors. When in doubt, consult an appropriate professional.

If you insist on hanging a hammock on the outer wall, I suggest hiring a contractor or a qualified handyman. It’s a minor job to them and probably won’t cost that much.

Even so, here’s how you do it.


For this, we need:

  • A hammock chair
  • Rope
  • A very strong wall
  • Very long and thick screws
  • A very strong and thick metal rod
  • Two small hooks
  • Two stainless steel cables (about 6 feet long)
  • An electric or cordless drill

Step 1 – Choose the wall

To hang a hammock chair on a wall, drill a strong metal rod (which is expensive) into it and make sure that the wall, the rod, and the connecting screws (all under a 90° angle) can handle the weight of the people swinging on the hammock chair.

Weight-bearing rods tend to be expensive, and the price increases the more weight they will hold.

Remember that this is the least safe option (and I wouldn’t opt for it).

While this is doable, trees are generally stronger than this mechanism as there are no connection points (such as the handle of the rod and the screws pinning it to the wall).

Because of these safety concerns, I strongly recommend hanging the hammock chair on a tree or on a hammock chair stand, which can probably be found at the same store where you found the hammock. You could also hang it from a ceiling joist if that’s more your thing.

Many exterior walls are built very thinly, and I wouldn’t suggest pinning the chair to them as it’ll most likely fall off at some point. Drilling into the wall is only an option if strong brick walls exist.

The only walls that are good for this attempt are the load-bearing walls in the home – they’re designed to handle a lot of weight. Using a wall isn’t an option if this doesn’t work because of positioning or because you don’t want to ruin the façade (which will happen when the drill goes into it).

Remember that human weight can bring down construction if enough force is applied and if it’s under the correct angle, as we’ve learned from tragic examples like this one.

Step 2 – Hang and secure the rod

If sure about this, drill the rod into the chosen spot on the wall at an appropriate height – there should be at least six feet between the rod and the hanging height.

Ensuring the stability of the rod is crucial – if we hung the hammock on it right now and sat on it, we’d most likely rip the rod out of the wall instantly and end up with a bruised back.

That’s why we need to hang the rod – this mechanism is similar to hanging bridges. Install two hooks above the rod, diagonally to the left and right. These hooks need to be secured in the bearing wall and measured no further than four or five feet from the rod.

Use the cables to tightly secure the rod to the hooks. Now the rod is hanging from several points – not just from the point of wall attachment, and it’s much more difficult to get ripped out of the wall.

Try hanging from it – this is not a joke; this rod will have to be able to carry the weight. It’s better to get ripped out of the wall when we’re half-expecting it rather than when we’re dozing off with a book on our chest.

After this, go back to steps two through four of the previous section – the mechanism of hanging the hammock is the same.

One last time, I would like to reiterate that this is the least safe of all hammock-hanging systems, and it requires a lot of handiwork in the home for a simple hammock.

I would rather live a hammock-less life than drill into my walls to build a potentially unsafe system that could hurt someone someday. But that’s just me.

How Do You Hang a Hammock Without Drilling?

The only way to hang a hammock without drilling is to use a sturdy tree branch or a hammock stand system that requires little to no assembly. Hanging a hammock from any roof or wall will require drilling.

This depends on where we are hanging the hammock, so – there is no need to drill anything if we’re hanging the hammock on a tree branch.

However, if hanging the hammock on a wall, then it’s impossible to hang it without drilling. The same rule applies to hanging the hammock to the ceiling (although that’s much quicker, easier, and safer than hanging it on the wall).

There is no drilling if hanging a hammock on a stand, as they’re designed to tie the rope and be done with it. This brings us to our next section.

An image of a Hammock construction, metal support bars for hammock hanging close-up, instruction manual concept

How to Hang a Hammock on a Stand

Hanging a hammock on a stand is as easy as setting up the stand according to instructions and hanging the hammock to the hook on top. It often does not even need rope. Hammock stands are easy, safe, and oftentimes portable.

Personally, hammock stands are my favorite option. We’ve got a travel one we take camping, and it’s always the favorite resting place. We may even have to use a timer so everyone gets a turn!


To do this, you’ll need:

  • A hammock or a hammock chair
  • A hammock stand or a hammock chair stand (believe it or not, those are two different things)
  • Improvised weights (bricks or actual bodybuilding weights)
  • Some rope (optional)
  • Screwdrivers and Allen keys (although they may not be needed)

Step 1 – Set up the hammock stand

After buying the stand (a hammock stand if there is only a hammock, a chair stand if there is a hammock chair), set it up in a spacious area.

Setting up a hammock stand is as easy as pushing a few metal pipes into one another and tightening them. We will need our screwdrivers or Allen keys, but they often come with the package as the entire setup uses single-size screws.

Most kits even come as a pre-built contraption that all you have to do is extend and set up. Maybe there will be a lock to keep it open, much like folding tables.

Step 2 – Hang the hammock (chair) and test it

Most hammock stands have a hook tied to the ring on top of the hammock. Very few models need the rope tied (which is why rope is marked as optional).

After hanging it, apply some weight to the hammock. If it’s still hanging right, feel free to sit in it!

Can You Leave a Hammock Chair Outside?

The hammock can stay outside in nice weather. However, as soon as the rains and winds start, it is a good idea to bring it inside, so the weather doesn’t damage it. The rain will make it wet, smelly, and moldy, while strong winds can blow it away.

A hammock is something that people hang in the spring and bring back inside mid-to-late fall.

Important note: sunlight (specifically UV) can damage the hammock and ropes over time. Leaving a hammock out in the bright sunlight for too long can damage it. However, that’s also part of normal wear and tear, and those parts will still need to be replaced regularly.

Outdoor Hammock FAQs

Now that you know how to hang a hammock in almost every way possible, let’s cover some frequently asked questions about hammocks, outdoor chairs, and enjoying a hammock.

Don’t see your question? Use our contact us page to get it to us. That way, we can answer your question and update this article for other readers! After all, there aren’t any dumb questions – just questions that need to get answered ASAP, so people don’t get hurt.

Can you hang a hammock on trees?

Strong branches can carry a person’s weight in a hammock for years. This is also the easiest way of hanging a hammock as there is no need to drill anything – all we have to do is tie some rope.

Make sure the branch you’re hanging the hammock on is alive and strong. Dead branches have a tendency to break.

Also, check the rope regularly, as it can fray on a branch. You’ll also want to check the branch itself regularly. If the rope damages it, you’ll want to hang the hammock elsewhere.

Can you hang a hammock on a wall?

It is possible, but choose another option if possible. This is the most complex and the least safe option, while it requires more work than all other options combined.

Hanging a hammock on a wall also puts the biggest weight limit on it. So it’s less fun if you like sharing a hammock.

An image of a Hanging home rope swing in a Scandinavian interior. The concept of home life, hugge, home comfort.

Where do I hang a hammock if I don’t have a tree?

The lack of a good tree is a common problem; people can buy a hammock stand to hang it on. These stands are made specifically for hammocks and are just as good as trees.

Another option is hanging it to the ceiling inside or on the terrace, which requires drilling into the ceiling and attaching hooks.

Next Steps

Hanging a hammock under a tree is a quick and easy DIY job, just like hanging it to a stand. However, wall-hung hammocks are more complex and not as safe, so I suggest avoiding them.

Once done, a hammock should easily carry a person’s weight, and you should be able to swing (to a reasonable degree) without falling.

Now, if you’d like to hang a swing from a set of joists, I recommend you read our article on How to Hang a Porch Swing with Rope (or chains) next.


Learning from your own experience is important, but learning from others is also smart. These sources were used in this article and our research to be more informed as we DIY and decorate our homestead.

  • Holohan, Meghan. “Tragic Death of Cleveland Heights Sisters Highlight Hammock Risk.”, 25 June 2020,
  • Region 10 – Forest and Grassland Health. Accessed 22 Sept. 2022.

Homestead Style Guide uses ads and participates in select affiliate advertising programs, including the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. If you click a link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Connect with Me