How to Download and Use Instagram in China (2024)

  • Last updated January 10, 2024
  • written by


Is Instagram blocked in China? Yes, Instagram was temporarily blocked in the country in 2014 due to Hong Kong protests, but it is now completely censored. If you try to access Instagram in China, you will receive an error that says ‘feed cannot be refreshed’.

To unblock Instagram in China, you need a VPN service that works in China or Hong Kong which will assign you a US IP address. In this guide, I have discussed such 3 VPNs that help you access Instagram in China with ease.

I recommend using ExpressVPN to unblock Instagram or any other social media websites that are blocked in countries with strong online restrictions. You can also check out the top VPNs tested and recommended by VPNRanks.

How to Unblock Instagram in China

Step 1: Sign up with ExpressVPN before you enter the Mainland China

Step 2: Download and Install ExpressVPN app on your preferred device

Step 3: Open the app and connect to the US server


Step 4: Now open the Instagram website or Instagram app


Step 5: The feed will be refreshed and you will be able to access Instagram

3 Best VPNs that Unblock Instagram in China

The key to making Instagram work in China with ease is to get one of the VPNs before your arrival in China. Even if you didn’t, you don’t need to worry because these VPNs have websites that work in China.

Even though the Chinese government is cracking down against VPNs, you could still access a VPN. Here are the 3 best VPNs that unblocks Instagram China:

1.  ExpressVPN


ExpressVPN is undoubtedly the best VPN having 3,000 servers that help you access Instagram China without trouble. With ExpressVPN, you get powerful online protection and the internet without borders. Also, if you want to unblock Netflix in China, ExpressVPN is the perfect solution.

It is available on every device that includes Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux, Routers, Smart TV’s, and more. It also has 24/7 live chat support that will help you set up and troubleshoot.

You can watch, listen, and stream content from censored and blocked websites. You can also use a VPN in Hong Kong to unblock Instagram. With its 256-bit encryption, it hides your online browsing history. It is available for $6.67/mo - Save up to 49% with exclusive 1-year plans + 3 months free and gives you 30-days refund policy. Read ExpressVPN review for more information.

2.  PureVPN


PureVPN is our top recommendation when it comes to accessing Instagram in China. It employs a top-of-the-line military-grade 256-bit encryption that protects your data from the government and intruders.

Since it has 6500 servers that are available in 140 countries, you can unblock Instagram with ease. If you’re afraid that the Chinese government will know that you’re using a VPN, then PureVPN has you covered against that as well. It completely masks your IP address with complete privacy.

PureVPN offers a super-affordable price of $3.29/mo (5 Months FREE + 84% Off on a 2-year plan) with a 31-days refund policy. Read our PureVPN review for more information.

3.  Ivacy


Ivacy is one of the few VPNs that have great demand in the Chinese region. Not only does it unblock Instagram, but it also manages to access other social websites such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and more. It has 3000 servers that are available in 100+ locations.

It offers 256-bit encryption for online security purposes that is impossible to breach. It keeps your internet traffic encrypted which means all your browsing history will remain protected.

Ivacy has a decent price to offer at $1/mo with a 30-days refund policy. You can use Ivacy for Instagram on 5 different devices as well. Read Ivacy VPN review for more information.

Why China Blocks Instagram

Upon citing the threats to the existing government, China decided to ban Instagram and the hash-tag “Occupy Central” with immediate effect. However, according to some reports, the ban was limited to China only and Instagram was still accessible in Hong Kong.

China has blocked Instagram after the Pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong took on social media. They posted photos and videos of the protests on Instagram and used the hash-tag “Occupy Central” on Instagram and Weibo (China’s own version of Twitter).

Amid all the chaos and unrest, some of the people are still able to use Instagram in China. They have found a way out to secure a protected online connection to access Instagram like the ban was never imposed on it. The people are using Instagram VPNs that allow them to bypass geo-restrictions while remaining hidden from the eyes of the government and other online surveillance agencies.

The VPNs do so by replacing your current IP address with its own IP address of other regions. They allow you to access the blocked content and ensure you 100% privacy and security. With the strong encryption of data, the VPNs make sure your data is safe from the likes of cybercriminals, ISPs, and online surveillance agencies.

Can I Use a Free VPN to Unblock Instagram in China?

While exploring the best free VPN for China, it’s worth noting that some options can be effective in bypassing the Great Firewall and accessing Instagram. Users may find suitable choices with reasonable speeds and adequate security features, enhancing their online experience.

Therefore, it’s recommended to research and select free VPNs carefully, considering user reviews for reliable options. For those seeking an even more robust and consistent solution, premium paid VPN services tailored for navigating China’s internet restrictions could offer enhanced performance and security.

Which Sites are blocked in China?

China is a country where you cannot access various social interaction sites quite easily. The official Chinese authorities have implemented rigorous online barriers in the form of GFW. Therefore, you cannot access different social media and informative sites in China that includes

  • Google Services
  • Gmail (See this Guide: )
  • Youtube
  • Vimeo
  • Daily Motion
  • Nico Video
  • The New York Times
  • Financial Times

Final Thoughts

China is adding new tools in its armory to stop its local netizens from using Instagram and social media services in China. The government blocked Instagram in 2014 and after that, many people are using VPNs to unblock Instagram in China.

In this guide, I have recommended ExpressVPN along with 2 others that pretty easily unblock Instagram. Just install these VPN apps and stay connected with the loved ones on Instagram

Recent Comments 1

  • jessica says:

    Now if you guys any issue to unblock Instagram not only in china but also if you guys are willing to unblock someone or your own self and several other issues then I will suggest you guys to check this article to know how to unblock on instagram for all purpose.

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