9 must-see .onion sites from the depths of the dark web

Must-see sites on the dark web

The deep web is the part of the internet that is not indexed by search engines. A part of the deep web is the dark web, which exists inside layered proxy networks, so-called darknets. Of these darknets, Tor is by far the largest. The suffix of its native domains, .onion, has become synonymous with internet freedom.

This article can also be found on the dark web!

Get the Tor browser and go to http://expressobutiolem.onion/blog/best-onion-sites-on-dark-web/.

But what kind of sites are hosted in this dark net? What do they do and why are they there? ExpressVPN proudly presents 9 of the most (in-)famous:

(Note: You will need the Tor Browser to open all links in this article and to navigate the dark web. You can get the Tor Browser here.)

1. The Pulitzer winning ProPublica


Pulitzer winning ProPublica .onion site.

The first online publication that won a Pulitzer is now also the first major publication with a .onion address.

ProPublica does a lot of things differently. Its source of funding is the deep wallet of the Sandler Foundation and various other similar organizations.

Browsing the ProPublica website through their .onion site works well and is a big win for privacy and free speech.

2. Facebook’s .onion site


Facebook on .onion

Why would one of the largest organizations known for its invasive stance on privacy and controversial clear-name policy have a .onion address?

While Facebook might collect everything you say and do on its platform, it isn’t happy with sharing this information with others. Facebook is also keenly aware of attempts by many governments to restrict access to a tool that allows strangers across the web to engage in discourse and collaborate freely.

Facebook’s .onion address doesn’t make it much easier to maintain an anonymous account, but it does make Facebook more accessible in places where it’s censored.

3. DuckDuckGo where Google doesn’t


Search .onion with DuckDuckGo

Searching for content but don’t want to give up your privacy? DuckDuckGo is a great alternative to Google. Search activity isn’t logged by design. Even without the ability to learn about your behavior or monitor your email and browsing, DuckDuckGo provides decent results. Which begs the question: Are Google’s extensive surveillance techniques really necessary?

Over Tor, Google becomes annoying to use due to its many captchas, while The Duck excels at speed, reliability, and privacy.

4. Blockchain for Bitcoins on .onion


Access the Bitcoin Blockchain on .onion

Need to hold your Bitcoins anonymously? The world’s most popular online Bitcoin wallet is also reachable via a .onion address and together with Facebook, ProPublica, and the Intercept is among the only sites with HTTPS certification for their .onion address.

5. Sci-Hub — the world’s scientific database


Sci-Hub - the .onion science database

Sci-Hub is a platform that aims to liberate the world’s scientific knowledge.

Founded by Alexandra Elbakyan from Kazakhstan in 2011, it hosts over 50 million research papers and makes them available for free. This gives underfunded scientific institutions, as well as individuals, unprecedented access to the world’s collective knowledge, something certain to boost humankind’s search for an end to diseases, droughts, and hunger.

6. Netpoleaks is the .onion police monitor


Netpoleaks monitors UK Police

Want to securely leak information about the UK police to a reputable police monitoring organization?

Netpoleaks lets you upload information and files anonymously to their web server. Once submitted, you’ll receive a receipt in the form of a key code which you can later use to communicate securely with the site’s operators.

7. The Intercept — a .onion SecureDrop with TLS


The Intercept is an .onion secure drop with TLS

Are you sitting on a great story and need to share it anonymously with the team from the Intercept?

Their SecureDrop installation is one of only a few .onion sites with a TLS certificate, further underscoring the Intercept’s strong stance on privacy and solid dedication to helping whistleblowers worldwide.

8. Keybase is the cryptographic profile link system


Keybase links your .onion profiles cryptographically

Keybase is an exciting identity service that aims to make it easy for you to link the presences of your online identity together in a cryptographic way. You can upload your PGP key, or have the site create one for you, and use it to cryptographically link your Twitter profile, Github account, or Bitcoin address together.

Keybase significantly raises the bar for attackers who want to impersonate you.

9. The Hidden Wiki on .onion


The .onion hidden wiki

How do you discover content where search engines cannot reach? Just like in the old days of the internet, the dark web maintains numerous indexes of sites, like The Hidden Wiki.

This community-edited wiki contains a bunch of links to a wide variety of services and sources running on the dark web. Many of those links are defunct, and even more of them link to scams or potentially illegal activities. Click with caution!

The wiki also has articles and guides, conspiracy theories, and a short chronology of the dark web’s history.

Why not search .onion for more great sites?

This is ExpressVPN‘s list of .onion sites worth a visit, but these are not even the tip of the iceberg. There’s so much content out there (be warned, though, it’s not all good stuff).

What are your favorite .onion sites? Are there any sites you wish had a .onion address? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Also published on Medium.


  1. maybe we can get another list?……that was very helpful Lexie……and very informative. always take negative comments into consideration but scratch the ignorant ones….great work !

  2. Thanks Lexie… I was actually surfing through the net when i saw this whole deep dark web thing, so i decided to get some lil info bout it

  3. Just a few things to note especially for those whom are new to Tor or VPN. First thing first get a VPN before even accessing Tor site to download the browser or even git hub. EVERYBODY in this world that is using the internet should do so via a safe VPN service. There are good solid VPN providers out there USE THEM, ExpressVPN is among the very best and the one I use so take your pick.

    Reason for VPN – it hides you as long as it is installed correctly and starts with your computer, meaning it stops the operating system from opening any access sockets/ports when the machine is switched on. Once the VPN client is up and ready it opens and route the traffic leaving the machine.

    VPN encrypt your information, so lets use a postal system as an example. Imagine posting a letter in an envelop with coded information/address on the front, first the letter is written and put in the envelop the return/from address is hidden by VPN the envelop is sealed by VPN (titanium style 256 grade), so, when it gets into the shipping/postage line and away it goes, all along the way the sorting office, the postman, the post office and bob the security at the gatehouse checking the van and content has no clue what is in your letter or whom it is coming from or where it’s going – NOTE all the hiding is done via VPN all these other entities see is it is coming form a fake address set via VPN and going to another VPN address. They can’t open it because they haven’t got the key. AT THIS POINT where it leaves the sorting office for its final destination, Tor only traffic, Tor can fail (exit node issue) but if it is in a VPN tunnel (shipping/postage channel) anyone at this stage (snooping around) will see the VPN encrypted data, oh boy will they be pissed off, all that waiting in vain.

    To get the world on board we need Firefox to have native support for three or four top
    VPN service providers. So all we have to do is pop in a user name and password and away we go forever free and anonymous. (Browsing only) Other non-browser traffic would still be visible over the internet.

    Another solution is a VPN Router, Lynksys routers are the best for this and could set you back up to £400 for a top end one.

    Finally, always use VPN, get it, install it and ensure it is installed correctly, then Tor or Firefox, avoid Chrome and Chrome base browsers. They are based on google code which I know collects information from users. Trust no company to keep any data for you or about you. If you want to go mad then use QubeOS, VPN, Tor, Firefox, use with USB boot drive and USB storage so there is absolutely nothing on the laptop that could be used to identify you. Keep USB safe and backups hidden, this is for advance users possibly login into remote stealth servers. Standard home users just need VPN and Firefox or possibly Tor if you want to use the Dark Web for legitimate reasons.

  4. really a nice articul please canyou help with with onion sites where i can meet online hackers i really want to learn how to hack
    thanks lexie really want to meet good ones online

  5. Yeah, I only just started checking the “Dark Web” out an like why the hell would you be worried about the legality of being here? Are u kidding me! There r alot of sites that people should worry about on the “Light Web”. It’s people like that who really scare me, because they usually wind up in some high powered position where there there anal approach to things make the rest go friggin crazy. Anyway im sure they can look up Angels, an my little pony crap without fear of being ridiculed by someone like me who just doesn’t get those people. Oops, I was ranting my bad. Lol

    • The whole point of the dark net is the fact its way safer than your standard internet. Your more at risk now than if you were using tor. Just don’t get scammed by someone, same as people try to do regularly on normal .com’s. Do some research and you’ll see if you want to feel safe the darknet is where you want to be.

  6. Nice content will sure head up to look more deep dark below, I use tor for android for VPN since accessing VPN sites are even prohibited in UAE

  7. I tried to acces DuckDuckGo and I got the “No se puede acceder a este sitio. No se encontró la dirección DNS del servidor de 3g2upl4pq6kufc4m.onion.” errror. Same thing with Facebook. Is this article just old or it is……?

  8. I do not think I'm in a country were it is illegal and was wondering can I get on dark websites with out a vpn or anything

    I do not think I’m in a country were it is illegal and was wondering can I get on dark websites with out a vpn or anything

  9. So am I able to check out the dark web without running the risk of getting in trouble legally? I’m not looking for anything legal whatsoever but am very curious.

    • Yes, checking these sites out carries no legal risk. While of course it also depends on what country you are in, it is extremely unlikely that you will get caught just surfing these sites out of curiosity. Use the Tor Browser, it is a powerful anonymity tool!

  10. This list is a bullshit! its just some iditos wannabe to get money from whom people viewing and use the links posted in the blog post! DANG

    • No, we don’t make money from any of the external links. We just sell VPN subscriptions and love online privacy. We are also supporters of Tor and operate a .onion site ourselves.

      • I’m honestly surprised you respond to such ignorant people. This comment section hurts my neck, i dont think my heads stopped shaking since i started reading the comments. I appreciate you spreading awareness about the dark net but these people are not its target demographic. The dark net is for intelligent people who want anonymity. Stupidity like the comment you just replied to makes me ok with the fact they’re not using tor. Im not trying to sound arrogant or be arrogant or elitist for that matter but its just sad. It was a good article but most people wont get the point.

      • Just curious.. How long have these tor sites and tor browsers been around? I think it’s pretty cool! & your artical is very informative! On another note, not all these sites are bad for example the sci-hub! I love that we can read scientific research. But what are some risks of having a tor browser? & should i have a vpn while using a tor browser? Or is it unnecessary? Its freaking 2017 and im just finding out about this..

        • Hi! Tor was developed in the mid 1990s by the U.S. Navy, but the project was taken over by the EFF in 2002. We have a cool article about the history of Tor, check it out!

          Theoretically your Internet Service Provider (ISP) can detect whether or not you are using Tor, but in most places that is not a problem. If you are worried about it, use a VPN and open the Tor Browser once you are connected. Neither your ISP nor your VPN can see what you are doing in the Tor Browser, and your ISP cannot find out that you are using Tor.


          • Great article! I was wondering if there are any cool book finder onion sites? I was looking for some math textbooks online (can’t afford them hehe) and couldn’t find them. (for educational purposes of course).

          • I cannot help you with that! But they say one can find anything on the dark web, even books!


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