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20 Amazing Indoor Koi Pond Ideas


Source: onechitecture.com

Koi ponds have, for a while now, become a darling when it comes to decorating backyards and outdoor spaces. They are the perfect way to achieve a Japanese garden aesthetic. That said, in the spirit of creativity, perhaps it is time to reimagine the installation of koi ponds.

One of the unique ways you could incorporate a koi pond on your property is by installing it indoors. It would not only transform your decor but also your overall experience of the pond. Plus, there are now innovative accessories like cheap pond filter media that make pond management a breeze.

Curious? Let’s take a look at some amazing ways that you can install an indoor koi pond.

Table of Contents

An Instapond

An instapond with koi fish

Source: Pinterest

Instaponds are pre-built ponds that can be designed to your specifications in terms of shape and dimensions. The materials used to make the structure differ depending on how you intend to install it. The most common and fashionable are glass designs that have metal or concrete pillars for load-bearing support.

The advantage of instapond is that they are a plug and play solution; given as they are ready-made, all you need to do is have one installed. This cuts down on the inconvenience of having several days of construction in your living space. However, if you intend to buy a large fully assembled instapond, you may want to consider how you will get it past your doors.

Fountain-like Pond

Indoor fountain pond

Source: Pinterest

The base of a water fountain can be used as a pond. However, this would only work for young koi fish that are still small and require very little room to swim comfortably. If your indoor fountain is shallow, it is advisable that you relocate the koi when they start to get bigger. The water circulation in the fountain should, additionally, circulate at all times to maintain the flow of oxygen.

The beauty of improvising with a fountain pond is that it can be grand or just a manageable size. This means you can have one regardless of the size of your home. Plus, with the right embellishment, it can be a great decor piece that will be accentuated even further by the koi fish.

Unique Corridors and Hallways

A pond in a walkway

Source: homemydesign.com

One of the most dramatic yet charming decor effects of all time is bringing the outdoors in. Natural elements like water or house plants liven up a room instantly and in a way, nothing else would. To this end, consider transforming a boring walkway or walkway in your home into a koi pond.

It sounds insane at first but it truly isn’t. For starters, this would be ideal for a hallway that is not used too often. As such, it would not really inconvenience anyone. Better yet there are two ways to implement this type of indoor pond:

Risque- in this design, the koi pond would be dug into the floor in the hallway and you would have steps fitted in intervals to allow you to walk across the water.

Conventional- this installation would only take one section of the hallway floor such that the remaining side functions as a solid path used to get across the corridor.

Fish Tank Set-up

Koi fish in a glass tank

Source: Pinterest

This would be a pond designed as an aquarium. The difference is, it would remain open at all times. Further, just like an outdoor pond, the set up will require a pump for aeration of the water, a filtration system, and good water quality.

A fish tank set up is ideal if you would like something more mobile than an instapond. It might also be cheaper and can be designed in different sizes for different installations. Koi fish can be quite active and can get very large as they grow, with this in mind, aim for high-grade glass.

A Lazy River design

A lazy river pond inside a restaurant

Source: Pinterest

The concept of a lazy river would be suitable as a break between rooms. It would be a relatively narrow channel pond but if you have more room, you can make it bigger. Naturally, the size of the pond would decide the number and size of the koi fish you can have. You equally have the option of it being slightly elevated or at floor level. It would, however, be best to consult a structural engineer before you dig up your floors.

An Indoor-outdoor Pond

A glass floor built over a koi pond

Source: Pinterest

An indoor-outdoor pond is the option to go for if you would like to have your cake and eat it. As you design your outdoor pond, all you would have to do is create a channel that runs under the floor of your home. This segment of flooring would then be made of tempered glass to allow you to see fish swimming in and out of the channel when you are indoors.

This indoor pond idea is recommendable if you have children or pets and are worried about having an open indoor pond. For night-time viewing and as a decor statement, consider placing a light in the channel. It would be a stunning sight to behold in the dark. That said, given the complexity of the design, you might be better off getting professionals to handle the design and installation process.

A Centerpiece

Centrepiece koi pond

Source: homemydesign.com

Large houses often have vast spaces and foyers which can feel hollow and uninviting. An indoor koi pond can be used as a centerpiece to decorate such spaces. It would be a representation of your liking of koi ponds but it would also be a focal point. This could bring some definition to the space and can be complemented by art or similar decor accessories.

A pond made of glass might be too plain a centerpiece unless you have enough koi fish to draw attention. You could use other materials like wood paneling along the glass to enhance the look of the pond. This would nonetheless depend on personal tastes.

Stairwell Base Pond

A koi pond at the base of a staircase

Source: homemydesign.com

The nook at the bottom of a stairwell is often used as a coat closet or simply left unused. What if you put a different twist to it by installing an indoor koi pond? The charm of this idea is if you were to install it right below the staircase, the pond would be a great display but it would suffer little to no interference.

As you implement this, pay attention to safety issues. If you reckon this would present a danger to certain members of your household, then it may not be suitable for you. Alternatively, you could install it with cautionary measures in place.

A Nature Corner

A koi pond installed at the base of a living wall

Source: homemydesign.com

In the spirit of bringing the indoors in, consider installing not just a pond but other pieces of nature too. According to experts, greenery promotes wellness and can be very effective in countering mental stress. A plant wall with a pond running beneath it could thus make for a serene snug that you can retreat to at the end of a long day. It can work both as a secluded section or as a feature wall in a shared space in the home.

A Sunroom Koi Pond

A koi pond in a sunroom

Source: Pinterest

For various reasons, installing a koi pond in active spaces in your home may not be feasible for you. Let that not dissuade you from the idea of having an indoor koi pond. You can still have one in adjacent spaces like a sunroom of a conservatory.

Compared to other areas, a sunroom would likely be used less often. This would give you the freedom to install more elaborate designs like a koi pond with a waterfall. Coupled with the abundance of natural light in a sunroom, it would be a remarkable decor piece.

An Enclosed Back Porch Koi Pond

A koi pond at the back porch

Source: homemydesign.com

A back porch offers some privacy that you may not enjoy on your front porch. This makes it an ideal spot to set up your indoor koi pond. The amount of space you have will determine whether a sunken or elevated koi pond would be best. It may equally be helpful to install an overhead cover for shade and protection against rainwater which could affect the pH of the pond.

A Pond Room

A pond room

Source: Pinterest

In the same way that an indoor pool is allocated an entire room, so can a koi pond. For this, you would require a dedicated pond room preferably on the ground floor of your home. This would likely also be a custom pond design based on the dimensions of your chosen pond room.

A pond room would be a good fit for you if you would like a large display. You can make it as large as the room allows with some space left for a sitting area where you can hang out and watch your koi. Unsurprisingly, this setup will require more maintenance than most indoor setups.

An Indoor Garden Pond

Indoor garden with a fish pond

Source: Pinterest

As widely-known inspirational gardening quotes suggest, the most rewarding part of an indoor garden is that, with some care, it can thrive through all seasons. This is also true for a koi pond. In fact, your koi may fare better if they do not have to put up with the rigors of enduring winter outside.

As you set up your indoor garden and koi pond, ensure that you pick suitable plants such as manjula pothos that can coexist with the pond. Algae may be a common problem but that can be easily and quickly fixed using a pond UV sterilizer.

An Upcycled Koi Pond

Bathtub pond

Source: Pinterest

You might be holding off on getting an indoor pond due to budget restrictions. Fair enough, getting an instapond can be a bit pricey. However, if you have an old bathtub or can find one at a scrap yard, you can upcycle it into an indoor pond.

If it is made of metal, ensure that it is painted over to make it rust-proof. Any rough edges it may have should be smoothed over as well. In both ceramic and metal tubs, test for leaks by filling them with water and carry out repairs if necessary.

A Barrel Pond

Whiskey Barrel Pond

Source: Pinterest

Barrels too can be upcycled for use as ponds. They are worth considering for their rustic appeal and also if you have limited room in your space. A barrel can easily fit in a balcony, a bedroom, or even in a corner of your home office.

Part of the upcycling would include ensuring that the barrel can hold water. If there are any signs of porosity, consider lining the inside of the barrel with a pond liner. 

A Plastic Indoor Pond

A Plastic Indoor Pond

Source: onechitecture.com

Plastic indoor ponds are similar to instaponds, aside from the fact that they are made of plastic and tend to be smaller. They can be installed by being buttressed against a wall or you could remove some tiles from your floor to create a sunken spot for them to sit in. After the initial installation, all you have to do is add the water and the koi.

Plastic indoor ponds are a good option if you are working on a budget. They also provide lots of flexibility because they come in many shapes, sizes and can be uninstalled or moved without much hustle.

Rock Waterfall Pond

Rock waterfall indoor pond

Source: onechitecture.com

Rock waterfall ponds are statement pieces that instantly bring tranquility to a place with the gurgling sounds of water. That said, they can be a bit complex which is why they are installed more outdoors than indoors. You can overcome that hurdle by aiming for a small manageable design. Once you learn the ropes of maintaining both the waterfall system and the koi in the pond, you could always upgrade to a larger one.

If you would like to avoid spills or shield your setup from interference, consider insulating with a glass or tough plastic cage. For an attention-grabbing effect, you could light position your rock waterfall under some mild warm lighting to accentuate it in the night.

Bowl Pond

A bowl pond

Source: onechitecture.com

A bowl pond is made of glass placed on a mount and is, therefore, limited to small sizes. Speaking of which, this design would only be feasible for a handful of young koi as it is too fragile to handle the weight or vigor of larger or many koi. It does, however, make for a charming decor piece that can be placed in any room, unlike most other indoor pond designs.

A Meditative Koi Pond

Mediation area koi pond

Source: www.trendir.com

Koi ponds are associated with serenity and calm. For this reason, they are dependable additions for indoor spaces used for meditation, yoga, or similar grounding experiences. Given the purpose of this particular pond, it would be best to choose a secluded location for it in the house. If you are pressed for space, you could demarcate the area using a room divider or towering leafy plants.

A Floating Footpath Koi Pond

Floating footpath pond

Source: decoist.com

This type of koi pond can be situated at different parts of the house depending on preference. It should, nonetheless, be a sunken pond and not a raised one because it will be used as a path in the house. This means it will have a series of steps that one can use to get across the pond. This may be best suited for a household with adults; children may not have the balance to cross such floating footpaths without supervision.

Koi Pond Waterfall

Koi Pond Waterfall

Source: https://www.istockphoto.com/hk/%E7%85%A7%E7%89%87/garden-pond-gm139900023-1613358?phrase=Koi%20Pond%20Waterfall

Your dull backyard or the same old front yard might often require a transformation that could make it lively. A waterfall on the koi pond can be that lively addition to your dull spaces. With great creativity and a specific budget, you can set up a beautiful Koi pond waterfall. 

It is a perfect balance of water movement and a gratifying sound. You can adopt different koi pond waterfall ideas in your space such as small koi ponds, koi ponds with bridges, above-the-ground koi ponds, and many more. 

The different factors that can influence the design of the waterfall include space, budget, style, and many more.  

Koi ponds can be considered large swimming pools for the Koi fish. These ponds do not contain any kind of aquatic plants, rocks, or gravel that could possibly harm the fish. Some of the features of this Koi pond include a straight downside without any flights to prevent any kind of predator attacks. Moreover, its minimum depth is 4 feet. 

The waterfall in Koi ponds leads to a lot of movement which increases the aeration and as well as the oxygen content of the water. Moreover, the moving water would prevent the accumulation of algae and mosquitoes. 

Koi Pond With Bridge

bridge over koi pond

Source: https://in.pinterest.com/pin/475692779396872685/

Ever tried out a bridge over the koi pond, it might sound like a lot to you but the beauty it adds is astounding. Not only does it emerge as a unique koi pond idea but also allows you to view the pond and your beautiful koi fish as a whole. It is not significant to build a huge bridge across the pond. Just a small one created from stones would be enough to enhance the appearance of the pond. 

The length of the bridge over the koi pond depends on the size of the pond; however, it should be a minimum of 28 feet long. The bridge is mainly surrounded by solar lights, railings, or other fancy additions you wish to make. 

The bridge acts as a shade for the fish and can protect it from predators or any harm. Moreover, it allows a clear view of the pond.  

Above Ground Koi Pond

Above-ground Koi pond

Source: https://in.pinterest.com/pin/58687601384199755/

If there is a lack of enough space and cannot dig deep either yet you require a koi pond, then Above Ground Koi Pond can be a great option. They are simply created from stones and materials used in creating wood fountains. 

These types of koi ponds are constructed quite quickly and easily. Moreover, it is a safer choice especially if you have kids at home. It can also save you from the tedious job of digging the ground and are less hazardous than the in-ground ponds. 

There are a lot of ways of building above-ground koi ponds. It can either have glass walls or a beautiful stone construction on the sides. The above-ground koi ponds can be installed indoors and are built in a semi-circular pattern. Most of these ponds are created taller than the surroundings to create an impressive focal point. 

It is cost-effective and can be set up quickly. They also allow you to keep your fish safe from changing temperatures by installing them indoors. 

Factors to Consider When Installing an Indoor Koi Pond

The value of an indoor koi pond is undeniable but it would be remiss to leave out vital installation considerations. The following are a few key issues worth keeping in mind as you plan for an indoor koi pond.

Structural Safety

A woman standing in a room with stripped walls

Source: Pexels

Any installations that interfere with or alter walls or a floor have a direct impact on the structural safety of your home. if you tear down a load-bearing wall, for instance, that would be a recipe for disaster and the roof could easily cave in. Digging up the floor to install a sunken pond could also upset the positioning of joists and floor support beams.

To avoid wreaking havoc on your own home, take the time to consult a structural engineer and seek guidance on what you can and cannot do. You will likely learn a lot as well including safety tips like the fact that indoor ponds are best installed on the ground floor as opposed to other stories. Where possible, they should be along a sturdy load-bearing wall.

Indoor Pond Management

A weekly planner next to a laptop

Source: Unsplash

With outdoor ponds, you could get away with murder as far as maintenance is concerned. Delaying your water change by a day or three may not really impact anyone or anything too seriously. This would not be the case with an indoor pond.

An indoor koi pond will be in your immediate living space. If you leave it unkempt even just for a week, the smells emanating from it or the turbid water may reflect poorly on the ambiance of your home. To avoid this, it would behoove you to create a pond management schedule and stick to it.

Child and Pet Safety

A fish pond with a safety cover

Source: Pinterest

Unlike aquariums, Indoor koi ponds are open designs. In other words, you would be one misstep away from tumbling right in with the colorful fish. Fortunately, in most cases, they are only about 4 feet deep.

While you may be able to pull yourself out of the koi pond if you fell, a child may not. This presents the risk of drowning for your child or pet. On the other hand, some pets may attempt to harvest and eat the fish which is a risk of its own kind.

For the sake of safety and peace of mind, invest in pond mesh covers. They would keep a child from accessing the water and carnivorous pets from trying to hunt the fish.

Pond Equipment

Pond skimmers

Without the right pond care equipment, you are likely to end up with a messy indoor koi pond. It may also please you to know that investing in the right tools could make your pond management a whole lot easier.  

So, to get you started on your shopping list, the following are some pond care challenges and what tools you would need to address them.

Dust and solid waste – for such beautiful fish, it is mind-boggling how much waste koi can produce. To ensure it is well disposed of, you will need a mechanical pond filter like pond filter brushes. They would catch all the waste and ensure the water quality remains pristine.

Algae – when the water in your indoor pond begins to appear turbid and emit an unusual smell, it is probably due to algae or unwanted microorganisms. To rid your pond of them and keep your koi healthy, you will need a koi pond UV sterilizer. Aim for lower wattage if your koi pond is small.

Poor water quality – it is vital that you test the pond water regularly to ensure that the quality is right for your fish to thrive. If you find that the nitrite and ammonia content is too high, it is best to introduce bio filters immediately if you had none. Pond bio filters provide room for good bacteria to develop which helps balance the water quality within suitable pH levels.

Grime and dirt – even with a filter in place, an indoor pond will accumulate its fair share of dirt over time. Always remember to empty your pond skimmer and clean your filtration system using appropriate brushes.

Professional Installation

On-going indoor pond construction

Source: www.sussexponddoctor.com

Some indoor koi pond designs like a bowl pond or an upcycled bathtub can be Implemented as DIY projects. However, if you choose more complex designs, it is highly recommended that you have a professional team handle the installation for you. True, it may cost more to do so but it is a worthy investment as opposed to the cost of damaging your home or getting the installation wrong.

Recommended Koi Pond Filters For Indoor Koi Pond

Ceramic Filter Media

Ceramic Filter Media

The ceramic filter media uses biochemistry filtration wherein the beneficial bacteria break down the unwanted dead plant debris or fish wastes in the pond. Moreover, it also prevents the creation of ammonia and nitrite that might be toxic to the fish. 

The porosity in its structure enables a better absorption rate and higher clog prevention. It can filter a minimum of 4,300 square meters/liter of water. The rich housing also helps in maintaining the pH balance further improving the bone growth and blood circulation of the fish.

Pond Filter Brushes

filter brush

Pond filter brushes are significant equipment for the cleaning process of different filtration systems. It plays a major role in biological and mechanical filtrations. The solid particles are left behind in the pond brushes as the water flows through it. 

The nontoxic EU RoHS-certified plastic and stainless steel materials created brush ensure a safe environment for the aquatic animals while providing enough space for the nitrifying bacteria to survive. Moreover, this brush can be easily cleaned by removing it from the filter and shaking it out. Make sure to avoid tap water while rinsing as it might reduce the beneficial bacteria.

UV Sterilizer For Pond

UV sterilizer

UV sterilizers are mainly placed in aquariums and koi ponds for effective management of the green water that the algae produce. It maintains a safe and non-toxic environment for koi fish. 

They cannot be considered filtration systems since they cannot catch behind the solid particles, however, they can help in destroying the free-floating algae and enhance the functioning of the beneficial bacteria. 

It is safe to use and the green light immediately turns red in case of any short circuit. Certified by the CE and UL tests, the UV sterilizers can kill 99.9% of harmful bacteria and algae efficiently.

Pond Filter Pads


Having a filter is important for any koi pond as it ensures the safety of the fish. Filter foams and mats are biological adhesive and are specially designed to promote bacteria growth and prevent clogging. 


Such filter pads can easily be cleaned with high-pressure water guns. Furthermore, the main purpose of such pond filter pads is to ensure an environment where the nitrifying bacteria could sustain themselves. Thus a reliable filtration system is required.  


Indoor pond ideas are as vast as the waters from which koi fish are harvested. It all simply boils down to decor preferences and other factors such as budget and finding the right pond accessory manufacturer. Nevertheless, when you finally choose to get one installed in your home, it will likely elevate your home to a new state of being. So, do not hesitate, go on and leap into your own indoor koi pond project.

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