HTML a tag

HTML <a> Tag


A link to

<a href="">Visit!</a>
Try it Yourself »

More "Try it Yourself" examples below.

Definition and Usage

The <a> tag defines a hyperlink, which is used to link from one page to another.

The most important attribute of the <a> element is the href attribute, which indicates the link's destination.

By default, links will appear as follows in all browsers:

  • An unvisited link is underlined and blue
  • A visited link is underlined and purple
  • An active link is underlined and red

Browser Support

<a> Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Tips and Notes

Tip: The following attributes: download, hreflang, media, rel, target, and type cannot be present if the href attribute is not present.

Tip: A linked page is normally displayed in the current browser window, unless you specify another target.

Tip: Use CSS to style links: CSS Links Tutorial and CSS Buttons Tutorial

Differences Between HTML 4.01 and HTML5

In HTML 4.01, the <a> tag could be either a hyperlink or an anchor. In HTML5, the <a> tag is always a hyperlink, but if it has no href attribute, it is only a placeholder for a hyperlink.

HTML5 has some new attributes, and some HTML 4.01 attributes are no longer supported.


= New in HTML5.

Attribute Value Description
charset char_encoding Not supported in HTML5.
Specifies the character-set of a linked document
coords coordinates Not supported in HTML5.
Specifies the coordinates of a link
download filename Specifies that the target will be downloaded when a user clicks on the hyperlink
href URL Specifies the URL of the page the link goes to
hreflang language_code Specifies the language of the linked document
media media_query Specifies what media/device the linked document is optimized for
name section_name Not supported in HTML5. Use the global id attribute instead.
Specifies the name of an anchor
ping list_of_URLs Specifies a space-separated list of URLs to which, when the link is followed, post requests with the body ping will be sent by the browser (in the background). Typically used for tracking.
rel alternate
Specifies the relationship between the current document and the linked document
rev text Not supported in HTML5.
Specifies the relationship between the linked document and the current document
shape default
Not supported in HTML5.
Specifies the shape of a link
target _blank
Specifies where to open the linked document
type media_type Specifies the media type of the linked document

Global Attributes

The <a> tag also supports the Global Attributes in HTML.

Event Attributes

The <a> tag also supports the Event Attributes in HTML.

Try it Yourself - Examples

Create hyperlinks
How to create hyperlinks.

Create a clickable image
How to use an image as a link.

Open a link in a new browser window
How to open a link in a new browser window, so that the visitor does not have to leave your Web site.

Create an email link
How to link to a mail message (will only work if you have mail installed).

Create another email link
Another mailto link.

Create a phone link
How to link to a phone number.

Link to another section on the same page
How to link to an element with a specified id within a page (the name attribute is not supported in HTML5).

Link to a JavaScript
How to add a JavaScript inside the href attribute.

Related Pages

HTML tutorial: HTML Links

HTML DOM reference: Anchor Object

CSS Tutorial: Styling Links

Default CSS Settings

Most browsers will display the <a> element with the following default values:

a:link, a:visited {
    color: (internal value);
    text-decoration: underline;
    cursor: auto;

a:link:active, a:visited:active {
    color: (internal value);