Can’t access VPN websites? Here’s what you have to do

Vlad Constantinescu
by Vlad Constantinescu
VPN Expert & Privacy Advocate
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  • VPNs are excellent tools that can keep you private and bypass various restrictions, but what if you can't access VPN websites, to begin with?
  • Certain governments and organizations such as schools or companies can restrict you from accessing and purchasing VPNs from official websites.
  • Check out our best VPNs that can help you protect your online privacy.
  • Visit the Unblocking Hub to learn more about unblocking various services by using VPN.
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VPNs are excellent tools that can keep you private and bypass various restrictions, but what if you can’t access VPN websites, to begin with?

It’s a common practice for some institutions to restrict users from accessing VPN websites. For instance, if you’re in a country that promotes censorship and citizen monitoring, you might not be able to open VPN websites.

The same thing applies to schools, where the staff has become aware that VPN can circumvent a lot of limitations. Thus, the only obvious solution to this issue would be blocking VPN websites altogether.

No matter the cause, blocked websites are quite annoying. More so when it happens to the websites of the tools that can unblock other websites.

Can VPN unblock websites?

Generally speaking, if a website is restricted to a certain region, you can use a VPN to circumvent this geographical limitation. You launch the VPN, connect to a server located in the country where the service is available, and things should be a-ok.

The same goes for websites that are blocked in narrow organizations such as school or company networks. You use a VPN, select a server that’s outside of the restrictive network, and you should be able to access the websites. It’s quite simple, actually.

Thus, it’s safe to conclude that a VPN could help you access blocked websites without too much effort.

Can VPN be blocked?

As VPNs got smarter and smarter, so did network administrators. Just as VPNs have the power to bypass blocked websites, so do network administrators that can block VPN services.

However, the process is quite meticulous and requires advanced firewalls that can detect VPN traffic. Just so you know, VPN traffic is quite easy to spot, since it’s all encrypted.

Some VPNs offer obfuscation capabilities, which cleverly disguise VPN traffic as regular, unencrypted traffic. This makes it extremely difficult for ISPs and their fancy firewalls to detect and block VPNs.

Check out our list of VPN services that offer obfuscation features:

Product NameObfuscationCompany Name
NordVPNObfuscated ServersTefincom & Co., S.A.
Surfshark VPNCamouflage ModeSurfshark LTD
VyprVPNChameleon protocolGolden Frog GmbH
IPVanishScramble OpenVPN trafficStackPath, LLC
ExpressVPNStealth serversExpress VPN International Ltd.
TunnelBearStealth VPNMcAfee, LLC
Windscribe VPNStealth VPNWindscribe Limited
VPN UnlimitedKeepSolid WiseKeepSolid Inc.

How to access blocked VPN websites?

If for some reason you’re not able to access VPN websites, it’s most likely due to your ISP actively blocking access to them.

Reportedly, various ISPs have flagged VPNs as adult content, which makes it tenfold easier to block them, since adult content restrictions have been around for quite a while.

So, what can you do if you’re unable to access VPN websites on your network?

1. Try changing your DNS

ISPs may assign a specific DNS to you when you sign up for their services. The bad news is that this DNS is, more often than not, restricted in a wide variety of ways.

For instance, using an ISP-assigned DNS could yield lower speeds, higher ping, or even prevent you from accessing certain websites or online content.

Using a free DNS service such as Google’s free DNS, Cloudflare or OpenDNS can boost the quality of your connection in terms of both speed and accessibility.

2. Ask a friend to purchase a VPN subscription

Even though the VPN website is blocked, that doesn’t mean you can’t use VPN services on your computer. You just need to have the client installation package and a valid subscription.

A blocked VPN website usually means there’s no way for you to purchase a subscription. That’s why we suggested you ask a friend, preferably one you trust and is outside the restricted network, to purchase a subscription for you and hand you the credentials and setup files.

After you retrieve the installation executable and credentials, you can install the VPN on your computer and use it as you’d normally do. However, please make sure you’re using an obfuscation-enabled VPN.

Remember that VPNs that don’t obfuscate traffic could still be blocked by your ISP.

3. Use VPN mirror websites

Some VPN services such as ExpressVPN offer mirror websites that can be accessed by users who can’t access the main website. For obvious reasons, we can’t post them here (your ISP could see and block them).ExpressVPN

However, a simple query on your favorite search engine could help you locate them quickly. Note that VPN mirror websites allow you to both purchase a subscription and download the installation package.

Thus, you won’t have to ask your friends for any favor in this case.

4. Use Tor to circumvent website restrictions

If your ISP didn’t already think of blocking Tor, you could use it to access VPN websites. For this to work, you’ll need to download the Tor bundle and use its network to bypass your ISP’s VPN website blocking.

Note that you’ll probably need to be patient, as Tor generally runs very slowly. Even without ISP throttling, Tor is still quite lazy.

Certain VPN providers such as ExpressVPN offer onion websites that you can access with Tor. These are hidden services and aren’t usually picked up by your ISP.

5. Use a proxy server

Although proxies have somewhat decreased in popularity since the uprising of VPNs, they are still quite capable of letting you reached restricted content.

Furthermore, proxy servers are perpetually changing, so there’s a good chance that servers you can find today won’t be there anymore tomorrow. This usually means that your ISP needs to be extra thorough when blocking them.

The great news is that you can find a huge selection of free proxy servers online. Thus, you may not even have to pay for using such a service.

6. Use specialized tools like Proxychains

If you’re really stubborn, you can probably find a huge selection of privacy-focused third-party tools on the Internet. Such a program is Proxychains, which is free to use and not difficult to configure.

The bad news is that you’ll probably have to find one that runs on Windows since Proxychains has been designed to run on Unix systems.

VPN websites can eventually be unblocked

To wrap it up, even if you discover that you can’t access any VPN websites on your network, things probably aren’t so grim. There are a bunch of workarounds that can help you reap all the benefits of having a VPN.

For instance, you can ask a friend to purchase a VPN subscription for you, use specialized third-party apps, and even change your ISP-assigned DNS.

FAQ: Learn more about accessing blocked VPN websites

  • Does ExpressVPN work in China?

Even though ExpressVPN is not government-approved and banned in China, it still works surprisingly well. The downside is that you can’t purchase a subscription or download the client installer if you’re in China.

  • Can VPN be blocked?

If you live in a restrictive region, your ISP might find a way to block VPNs on your network. However, there are a few suggestions you can use to bypass this limitation.

  • Can VPN access blocked websites?

If you notice that certain websites have been blocked by your ISP, you can safely use a VPN in an attempt to bypass the restriction.