21 shortcuts for Safari you need to know

Become a Safari Svengali by employing some of these keyboard shortcuts.

Matt Elliott Senior Editor
Matt Elliott is a senior editor at CNET with a focus on laptops and streaming services. Matt has more than 20 years of experience testing and reviewing laptops. He has worked for CNET in New York and San Francisco and now lives in New Hampshire. When he's not writing about laptops, Matt likes to play and watch sports. He loves to play tennis and hates the number of streaming services he has to subscribe to in order to watch the various sports he wants to watch.
Expertise Laptops, desktops, all-in-one PCs, streaming devices, streaming platforms
Matt Elliott
4 min read

If you use Apple's own browser on your Mac, then I've got some shortcuts to share with you. With just a handful of these keyboard shortcuts, you can become a superior Safari surfer.

Tab and window management

1. Open link in new tab

Some links are coded to open in the current tab while others open in a new tab. To take control of this behavior, press Command when you click a link to stay on your current page while opening the link in a new tab in the background. Likewise, use Command-Shift-click to open link in new tab and switch to it.

2. Jump to next or previous tab

Use Command-Shift-right arrow to jump one tab to the right and use Command-Shift-left arrow to jump one tab to the left. Alternatively, you can use Control-Tab to move to the right and Control-Shift-Tab to move to the left

3. Jump to specific tab

To jump to a specific tab of the many you have open, press Command and any number key between 1 and 9. Command-1 jumps you to your first (left-most) tab. Command-5, for example, jumps you to the fifth tab from the left.

4. Bring back closed tab

You probably use Command-T to open a new tab, but did you know that Command-Z opens your previously closed tab. Undo that last tab closure! Unlike Chrome and Firefox that remember your last 10 closed tabs, Safari brings back only your last closed tab with this shortcut. For other closed tabs, you'll need to find them in Safari's History.

5. Drag tabs

Safari is quite flexible when it comes to moving your tabs around. You can click and drag a tab to move it to another spot among your row open tabs in the current window. You can also drag a tab out of the current window and start a new window or drag it from one window to another window.

6. M for minimize

Hit Command-M to minimize your current window.

7. Close current tab or window

This shortcut saves you from needing to click the little X to close a tab. Instead, use Command-W to close your current tab. To close your current Safari window, use Command-Shift-W.

8. Close all tabs but current tab

After an explosion of tabs, you can close all tabs but the current tab (and any pinned tabs) by hitting Command-Option-W.

9. Enter Reading Mode

Hit Command-Shift-R to enable Safari's reading mode to get a clean, clutter-free version of the page you are viewing.

10. Add to Reading List

Hit Command-Shift-D to add the current page to your Reading List so you can return to it later.

11. Open the Sidebar

Hit Command-Shift-L to open Safari's Sidebar to see your Bookmarks, Reading List, Shared links. Hit the keyboard shortcut again to close the Sidebar.

12. Go fullscreen

Hit Command-Control-F to move in and out of fullscreen mode.

13. Private, keep out

Hit Command-Shift-N to open a Private Browsing window.

14. Mute noisy tab

Like Chrome, Safari displays a speaker icon on any tab that is playing audio. Unlike with Chrome, with Safari you can click on the speaker icon to mute the tab. You can also click the blue speaker icon in the URL bar to mute all tabs.

Page navigation

15. Forward and back

You can go back a page on your current tab by hitting Command-left arrow. To move forward a page, use Command-right arrow.

16. Page up and down

When you are viewing a page (and not filling out a form, using Google Docs or otherwise engaging your cursor in Safari), hit the spacebar to page down on a page and Shift-spacebar to page up.

17. Top or bottom

Hit Command-up arrow to return to the top of the web page you are viewing and Command-down arrow to go to the very bottom of the page.

18. Stop a page from loading

If a page is taking too long to load, hit the Escape key to stop it from loading. To reload the page, hit Command-R.

19. Zoom controls

If you have trouble reading a small font on a page, hit Command-Shift-[equals sign] to zoom in. To zoom out, use Command-Shift-[minus sign] to zoom out. To return to the default zoom level, hit Command-Shift-0 (zero).

20. URL bar

Hit Command-L to take control of URL bar.

21. Find bar

Use Command-F to open the Find bar to search for text on the current page. When searching for text with the Find bar, hit Return to go to the next instance of your search term on the page and use Shift-Return to go to the previous instance.

Many of the shortcuts are the same, but I've got Chrome shortcuts and Firefox shortcuts if either is your preferred browser.