How to Block Websites on Safari on Mac, iPhone and iPad in 2020

2020-01-08 05:08:39 / Posted by Connie Wisley to Utility Follow @ Connie

This article will talk about how to block websites on Safari on Mac, iPhone and iPad. When you want to stay focused on your work or study, it’s a good idea to block distracting websites like Facebook. Also, parents can block certain websites to prevent children from seeing inappropriate online content. Is it possible to block websites on Safari, the default browser on Apple devices? Yes! And guide will show you how to do the blocking using different Safari website blockers.

How to block websites on Safari on Mac

Method 1. Use websites blocking software

To block a website on Safari Mac without Parental Controls, the best way is to use website blocker Safari like AppCrypt, a versatile website and app blocker.

  • Block specific websites on Safari, Google Chrome and more
  • Easily blacklist or whitelist websites
  • Make it easy to block and unblock websites
  • Also password lock apps permanently or for a period of time
  • Provide a record of failed attempts to access locked apps
  • Support macOS Yosemite or later, including Catalina
  • Easy to use, with simple intuitive interface

Free Download

How to block websites on Safari Mac in 3 easy steps

Step 1. Download and install AppCrypt. When you open the app for the first time, it will ask you to set a password.

set a password to block or unblock websites

Read the warning before you click the Submit button.

Step 2. Click the WebBlock button in the upper right corner.

click the gear icon

Step 3. In the Preferences window that appears, select WebBlock. The Safari website blocker offers two solutions: Blacklist (the default one) and Whitelist.

block sites on Safari by creating blacklist or whitelist

  • Blacklist To block a website on Safari on Mac, click the add icon in the lower left corner and enter the specific domain name, say, or To remove a domain from the blacklist, select it and then click the minus icon.
  • Whitelist If you need to block all websites except a few on Safari on your Mac, please select the checkbox next to Whitelist - Allow all websites above and enter the domains. This way, one can only open websites that have been added to the whitelist.

Once a website is blocked, the access to all web pages in this domain will become unavailable. For example, when Facebook is blocked on Safari, you won’t be able to open any page matching:*. Note that the blocking will also be applied to other browsers (if any) on your Mac.


  • Unblock all blocked sites with one click To effortlessly unblock blocked websites on Safari, you can click the icon of AppCrypt in the menu bar. Select Disable WebBlock. Enter the password you’ve set. Click Submit. The websites will become accessible immediately. Likewise, you can also enable WebBlock with a click.unblock all blocked sites by clicking Disable WebBlock
  • Block apps In addition to blocking websites on Safari and other web browsers, this tool is also able to password lock any apps on Mac. You can lock/unlock apps by clicking the Add App/Remove App button. To set up a schedule, just go to Menu > Preferences > Schedule.

Free download the app and use it to block websites on Safari on iMac, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, etc.

Free Download

Method 2. Use Terminal

Another way to block websites on Safari on Mac without Parental Control is to edit the hosts file in Terminal.

Step 1. Open Spotlight Search and search for the Terminal. Then launch the Terminal.

Step 2. In the command line, type in sudo nano /etc/hosts, enter your admin password when asked.

Step 3. Then use your down arrow to get to the bottom and press Return. On a new line, type in And press Return. Type another URL or Site following the same steps. Do not add more than one URL or site in a single line.

edit hosts fie in Terminal to block sites

Step 4. Now, hold down Control + O to save the changes to the host database. Then exit the screen.

Step 5. Remove the existing cache by typing in sudo dscacheutil -flushcache in the command line, and then press Return to finish the process.

Anyone should receive an Unable to connect error message when he or she goes to the websites you added in the Terminal Host file. Above are the steps on how to block websites on Safari with Terminal.

To unblock websites on Safari on Mac, open Terminal. Type sudo pico /etc/hosts, remove URLs and websites and press Ctrl + O. Hit Return.

Note: If you are not familiar with Terminal or the hosts file stuff, you may not feel confident using this method. If so, you can try the method above.

Method 3. Use Parental Controls

macOS provides a built-in method to block websites on Safari, which Mac users are familiar with. Parental Controls allows you to set up a new account and use the Browser Restrictions function for this specific account.

However, there is a big downside. It doesn’t work with the administrator account. In other words, it won't work if you need to block yourself from visiting certain website on Safari.

Step 1. Click the Apple logo in the top menu bar. Select System Preferences > Parental Controls.

Step 2. Choose to create a new user account or to use the current account based on your need. Click Continue.

Browser Restrictions

Step 3. Go to the Web tab and select the option that suits your situation. For example, to block a specific website on Safari, choose Try to limit access to adult websites, click Customize. Enter website domains.

To unblock access, go to Web > Website Restrictions. Enable Allow unrestricted access to websites.

Tip: Screen Time, a feature once available exclusively on iOS, finally comes to macOS with the release of 10.15 Catalina. It replaces Parental Controls. To restrict websites in Safari with it, just go to System Preferences > Screen Time > Content and Privacy > Content and set things up.

Another method to block websites without using Parental Controls is to use Safari extensions like 1Blocker. It’s a Safari content blocker designed for both macOS and iOS. Coming with an array of default blocking rules, it enables users to efficiently get rid of distracting websites, malicious websites, spam websites and any specific website.

How to block websites on iPhone and iPad

Method 1. Use Restrictions

Can you block a website on iPad? How to block websites on Safari on iOS 12 and iOS 13? Many parents feel the need to prevent their children from opening URLs that take them to adult websites or other inappropriate places online. You can use the automatic settings and the blacklist or whitelist features on your iPhone or iPad to block specific websites on Safari.

Step 1. Tap Settings on your iPhone or iPad. Tap Screen Time > Content & Privacy Restrictions.

If the Screen Time feature is not enabled on your device, you need to turn it one first and set a password.

Step 2. Enable Content & Restrictions. Select Content Restrictions > Web Content > Limit Adult Websites > Add Website.

select Web Content

Step 3. Enter the website you want to block in the website field. To add more websites to the blacklist, just repeat this process.

When you try to open a blocked site on your iPhone, you will receive the Restricted Site message reading: “You cannot browse this page at because it is restricted.”

If your device is running on an operating system prior to iOS 12, the process can be a little different.

Step 1. Tap Settings > General > Restrictions.

Step 2. To enable Restrictions, type a 4-digit password that others such as your children won't be able to guess easily. Type the password again to confirm it.

enable Restrictions on iOS 11

Step 3. Tap Websites under Allowed Content. Tap Limit Adult Content and then tap Add a Website under NEVER ALLOW.

Step 4. Type the domain name. Tap Done to finish.

enter website name to the block list

Note: If the certain websites have different mobile sites, you may need to block them separately on your iOS devices. To permit access to certain approved websites and block the rest, you can select Allowed Websites Only or ALWAYS ALLOW and enter website names.

Method 2. How to block websites on iPhone without Restrictions

How to block websites on Safari on iPhone without Restrictions or Screen Time? Third-party apps like Zero Willpower can help you out. Requiring iOS 9.0 or later, it is able to block websites on iOS Safari. It would be better if it could also support other browsers.

Step 1. Download and install the app on your iOS device. Launch it.

Step 2. Tap Settings. Switch Content Blockers. Enable Zero Willpower.

Step 3. By default, there are already some websites on the block list, such as, and You can add a specific site by tapping the add icon.

block websites on iOS Safari using Zero Willpower app

To block websites on Safari for a period of time on your device, tap the clock icon in the lower right corner of the screen and set up schedule.


You can easily block a website on Safari on iMac, MacBook Air, iPhone 11, iPhone XR, iPhone XS, iPhone 8 and other Apple devices by using the built-in or third party solutions. Limiting access to websites is a great way to improve productivity, reduce screen time and help keep kids safe online. Do you find this guide useful? Which method do you prefer? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below!

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