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Best Newspaper Themes For WordPress

In this article, the first in our WordPress “Best of” series, we’ll go over WordPress newspaper themes. We’ll bring you the 30 best WordPress newspaper themes, as well as two news-aggregator themes. We haven’t included “news magazine” themes, but we’ll get to those in our upcoming article on magazine-style themes.

Smashing Magazine newspaper1

The themes are categorized a bit differently than what you may be used to. The line between magazine and newspaper themes is blurry, but we’ve tried to make that distinction. For our purposes, magazine themes look something like Smashing Magazine, whereas newspaper themes look like the Daily Telegraph, New York Times and so on.

You’ll find some great themes in here. And if you know of any others, do drop a link in the comments. At the end of the year, we’ll publish a round-up of all the best WordPress themes.

Zenko2 (demo3)
Zenko is stylish and colourful newspaper theme. The flexible and widgetized layout lets you easily adapt the theme to your needs. You can display articles in two ways, with the feature slider or as featured categories. The best part is that all custom widgets in the demo come with the theme. Like any modern theme, it has an options panel for novice users. You can make numerous changes, including to the logo, favicon, advertisements and social-network connections.


Tribune5 (demo6)
This has everything a newspaper theme needs. The designer has brought the classic news layout into the 21st century by giving it a modern touch and superb positioning of widgets. In the header are featured articles. A large area is reserved for the top story, spacious enough to catch the reader’s eye. The main content area is in two columns, where you can arrange categories and widgets. All custom widgets are included. Although I don’t like themes that allow you to drastically change the layout, you can turn this one into a blog theme.


Telegraph8 (demo9)
This theme is inspired by the Daily Telegraph’s website. The designer has added a modern touch to the with the color palette and rounded corners. The home page can be customized in the back end, where you can choose which categories and posts to feature. You can also change the background color, manage advertisements and add widgets to sidebars. The theme comes with multiple custom widgets.


TerranTribune (demo11)
This newspaper theme has a lot of cool elements. Its unique jQuery features for readers include the ability to manage categories and drag-and-drop functionality for the layout. Also, visitors can set the number of posts shown in each category. This theme is fully widgetized, with an amazing 32 positions, and comes with a control panel and custom widgets.


WP Newspaper (demo13)
WP Newspaper is one of my personal favorites. It has the feel of a real broadsheet newspaper. With an elegant yet simple layout, it would make a great theme for your news website. It has four different category layouts (two column, media, magazine and default), and the advertisement module displays different ads for each category. WP Newspaper also supports FLV Video Player and jQuery Tools.

The Journal14 (demo)
This newspaper design is neat. It emphasizes clear typography and a clean grid structure, rather than layout imagery, making this theme a breeze to customize. Showcasing content is the priority here.

Deadline15 (demo16)
Deadline is a powerful and professional premium newspaper theme. Whether your website is a personal blog or a full-scale content-heavy newspaper, Deadline has got you covered. You control the layout, and you can manage the advertising, pull in the latest tweets and show video. Readers can reach you through a contact form enhanced either with jQuery or Google reCaptcha.


PIM18 (demo19)
PIM has flexible customization options, including for the home page widgets, skins and fonts. It also benefits from a quick-view feature; visitors can view incoming posts without having to refresh the page. There are also some jQuery-powered effects.


Arthemia21 (demo22)
Arthemia gives your news website a colorful touch. You can assign a color to each news category without having to edit the templates. Nice custom widgets highlight the top story and featured articles, and the colourful categories come with short descriptions. The back end is not as advanced as in some other themes, but it’s more than enough for beginners.


Simple Reader24 (demo25)
Simple Reader takes a different approach. It’s a kind of turn-key solution, a live sample that you can turn into a professional news theme. The template has a simple layout, and the nice jQuery pagination saves readers from page reloads. The theme comes with a grid and two-column page templates. You can also use the options panel to customize the analytics, style the layout, manage social networks and run advertisements.


SportsPress27 (demo28)
SportsPress is designed for sports, but it can be used for other news websites. The elegant white and blue design is minimalist. The theme can be customized in back end, with an advanced options panel that lets you control the entire home page, with seven widget position and multiple custom widgets. As a bonus, you get an integrated jQuery script that adds a nice lightbox effect for pictures and videos.


Massive News (demo30)
Massive News is a three-column layout theme for WordPress. You can switch the theme from the three to two columns; manage or disable the slider for featured posts and pages on the home page; and change the background color of content. The options panel includes Google Analytics integration, custom widgets for featured content, advertisements and related content, and much more.


Blognews32 (demo33)
Blognews is a stylish multi-purpose theme, with a unique home page that is ideal for those who want a more professional feel to their website. With 12 styles to choose from and a control panel for advanced options, the theme is easy to customize.


Bulldog (demo35)
If you run any form of news service, local newspaper, newsletter or even blog and you seek a professional way to present content, then Bulldog might be the solution for you.


One of WordPress’ issues is duplicate content, especially on magazine and news websites. The code for this theme has been written in such a way as to completely avoid duplicate content without using categories. Proximity has an integrated options panel, one of the easiest and most customizable I have seen. Besides being able to control every aspect of the design, you can set up AdSense, feature videos and much more.

New Yorker37 (demo38)
This was inspired by the New York Times’ website. Many people have been looking for a theme like this, so creating it was a great idea. The home page and sidebars are fully widgetized; you can use any of the seven custom-coded widgets (thumbnails, menus, comments, gravatars, Google Analytics and FeedBurner), along with all of the standard WordPress widgets.


This theme has four-column layout, allowing you to better control the home page and to place advertisements almost anywhere. Plus, there are options for column sizes, typography, navigation and more.

Being by the same developer, Byline and Local are very similar. Byline focuses more on typography, and it’s the first thing you notice. This theme uses Google’s Droid Sans Web font (changeable in the options panel). You can add color to the theme by adjusting the categories in the options panel. Like all Pro Theme Design products, this one comes with a plenty of custom widgets.

The News40 (demo41)
This theme has many built-in features such as for social networking and advertising, which can be customized. The options panel even takes over some of WordPress’ core settings. This is a really good solution for people who haven’t used WordPress before.


Weekly43 (demo44)
A true WordPress newspaper theme. It comes with all of the necessary widgets and an options panel, were you can manage advertisements, FeedBurner, statistics and more.


Channel Pro46 (demo47)
This simple clean newspaper theme has a two-column layout. The right column is used as a widget area, along with the footer. The options panel that lets you control every aspect of the theme, along with advertising and statistics.


News Time49
The News Time theme has a minimalist design; it’s amazing how much the designer has done with so little. The focus is on the navigation, which is in the left column, unlike in most other themes. The look may be a simple, but the awesome options panel inside controls every inch of the theme.

Syndicate50 (demo51)
This theme has the feel of a serious news corporation. An advanced control panel and 76 widget positions give amazing flexibility for customization.


News Flash
News flash has a nice design. With the rounded corners, dark background and elegant red navigation bar, it is one of the best designed newspaper themes out there. The home page is fully customizable from the options panel.

News Theme
This theme is 100% CSS, no images; amazing, isn’t it? Changes can be made in the options panel, without touching a single line of code; modifying any theme should be so easy. For more complex customization, though, you should probably know CSS. The theme has three columns, one for content and two for widgets and features. Widgets that come with the theme include a news ticker, a featured tab section for images and video, a vertical style menu, advertisements and much more.

Free WordPress Newspaper Themes Link

Global News53 (demo54)
I rarely come across great and free themes, but this fits the bill. It’s very well designed and thought out. Advertising space is off to the left, taking minimal space in the layout, which is good. This theme also includes a PSD source file of the logo. It was released by InstantShift.


Channel56 (demo57)
This is the free version of Channel Pro. It has two columns, featured articles and content on the left, and widgets on the right. In the options panel, you can manage advertisements and analytics and set up FeedBurner.


WordPress News Aggregator Themes Link

Aggregator is a free news aggregating theme. It pulls any kind of feed (posts, tweets, etc.) from any website and displays it on your website. The theme works as a CMS, so you can create pages but not posts.

This design is minimalist, but with a little CSS you can take it to a whole new level. The look is simple yet still appealing. Its purpose is to aggregate information from other websites and it comes with nice jQuery “quick view” feature.

Transmit is a simple free RSS aggregation theme inspired by AllTop. You can configure a single page with an unlimited number of RSS feeds from any website. The nice jQuery hover effect provides a short description of each aggregated post. Again, it works like a CMS, so you can create static pages but not blog posts.

Wrapping Up Link

Only some themes stand out from the crowd with their unique designs. Most of the themes featured above are fairly similar to each other in layout, colors and widgets. Every theme has an options panel, some of which are very advanced.

The main thing that irked me was that every developer claimed that their theme was optimized for search engines. I did a quick analysis for myself and found that all of the themes above are equally good from an SEO point of view; so, I ignore those claims, and so should you. Anyway, you should not choose a theme based on how search-engine friendly it is. To get real results on search engines, you have to do more than just fill in the blanks.

To get a full picture of today’s news themes, we recommend you stay tuned for our upcoming article on magazine themes. In the meantime, hopefully you find it a little easier to find a great news theme.

Resources Link


Footnotes Link

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Taavi is the founder of the is specialized in indexing best WordPress themes. Looking for a quality wordpress themes are like finding needle in a haystack. And that's what we are doing here ;)

  1. 1

    There are a lot of them but, when I needed them, I realized that none of them are doing all that what I want so I ended up making one for myself :)

    • 2

      Dear Ivica. Can you tell something detail about what you want for a perfect magazine wordpress theme? I have some magazine themes and I hope to hear something from you. You can check one of my theme here: Leadpress. Thank you very much.

  2. 3

    Any particular reason why all of them are using Arial or Georgia fonts for body text?

  3. 4

    Worst themes, sorry guys but these themese are really horrible…

  4. 5

    Very disappointing. Tired themes on the whole, ones you can find on any other website listing 50+ boring old themes.

    Not the usual SmashingMagazine standard in freshness or design.

  5. 6

    Curious to see that these themes are not so high quality (design wise) and seems to look all the same while at the same time the design of wordpress themes seems to improve constantly. Probably this is more true for business/corporate themes than the news ones because they sell more? (Just to be -very- clear: i am not imputing this to the selection or who has made it, I thinks in this area (once the n°1 in the WP scenes) quality is getting lost)

  6. 7

    Dumitru Brînzan

    May 24, 2012 3:31 am

    Thanks for including 4 of our themes (WPZOOM) to this collection, though it surprises me that you have included the older ones, and not more recent designs that customers are very happy about.

  7. 8

    Taavi Vaimel

    May 24, 2012 9:42 am

    Hi, probably you will see lot of freshness in magazine themes article. The idea was to separate magazine themes from newspaper themes. (Newspaper themes simple / Magazine themes fancy)
    It was really hard to set the standard for newspaper themes, because authors seemed to categorized them differently. So the standard that I have set, have put a lot of themes you expected to see here into magazine category. So this is only 1/3 article :)

    I’m really sad that there is lot of negative response because of the old themes. I’m really sorry, but I don’t want to make another article about themeforest themes, Internet is full of them.

    I have worked with WordPress over a 5 years. In that time I have spent thousands of hours to search themes and even more time to change or create them. That’s why I prefer themes that looking good from outside, SEO and stable inside. So I agree with guoliano, maybe standards are going down overall in wordpress. And of course newspaper themes article was just kick-off.

    • 9

      Being a newspaper/magazine designer in the past and wp developer at the moment, I can see that some of these themes have a strong basis for creating a good online newspaper. My only complaint is an extremely poor typography in all these themes.

      Seriously. All that Arial does look like a bad joke especially in the Premium themes. Aren’t they supposed to be out-of-the box solution where strong headings and readability would be a key feature? They must be the key feature, as, due to the nature of newspaper design, that’s the only thing you need to design here is text. And yet, all these themes failed to combined 2 or 3 quality fonts from the Google Fonts collection or Font Squirrel. Rather shocking really.

      • 10

        Taavi Vaimel

        May 28, 2012 4:03 am

        Yes, i agree with you totally. Lot of those themes have good basis. Thats why i have chosen them here. I have noticed same problem, that rarely theme makers but effort on typography, but at the other hand now there is google font plugin for WP so everybody can choose their fonts.
        In newspaper themes category there is lot of problems with maintaining the quality. I think it is because there is no real money in that category. Everybody is putting effort into business and e-commerce themes.

  8. 11

    Thanks for this post! I disagree with others who may forget these are the specific newspaper themes, not just any magazine or minimalist theme. There are good ones of those you can get, but where are the better “newspaper” themes? (the ones that look like a newspaper)

    • 12

      Taavi Vaimel

      May 28, 2012 3:56 am

      I had a same question “were is themes that look like real newspaper”, i searched and searched, but did not found it. Currently main influents of the newspaper themes are large newspaper sites designs like: NY Times etc.

  9. 13

    Certainly a good variety of themes for people interested in the news and aggregate genre, and I appreciate all your work in digging through to find these. I imagine the magazine list will be somewhat more dazzling, am looking forward to seeing the selection.
    It would be nice to see some more definite organization of the list – maybe by ease of theme set up? Or comparison of top two themes?
    Anyhow, thanks for the write up..

    • 14

      Taavi Vaimel

      May 28, 2012 3:52 am

      Thank you for the support. Will definitely think about the organization in my next article ;)

  10. 15

    Sadly, CHANNEL (free) isn’t working anymore on WP 3.3.2 :(

    Thanks for the article!

  11. 16

    Susheel Chandradhas

    June 17, 2012 3:54 am

    Nice set of themes. I’ll most likely use one of them sometime soon on my photography blog.


  12. 17

    news aggregator theme new for wp?

  13. 18

    John Moore Williams

    July 18, 2012 5:49 pm

    The article suggests this is the first of a series. Are there any others?

    • 19

      Hey. Yes there gone be new article about magazine themes soon. I have to apologize over a delay, because of personal matters i’m currently occupied. But keep your eye on SM, it will come soon ;)

  14. 20

    Matt Kaludi

    July 31, 2012 6:25 am

    It is shame that you haven’t included NewspaperTimes theme in your list which is quite popular Newspaper theme on web.

    Its clear that you don’t know the latest trends or atleast WordPress Newspaper themes that are available.

    • 21

      Hi. I mentioned in my article, that there is so many themes, so if you know some great theme just let me know in comments. Theme that you mentioned “newspaperTimes” is really good looking, thank you for that!

      Reason why i didn’t add that theme is probably because it wasn’t released when i made my article. Article was quite long time in review by SM.

  15. 22

    OMG really nice list.. i love it so much.. All there is good for news portal!!

  16. 24

    michael soriano

    October 17, 2012 1:14 pm

    Most of these themes are old. I have a new one called “Newspaper” –

    its fully responsive too!

  17. 26

    I am currently looking for the latest ‘state of the art’ Newspaper Theme employing all the latest technological advances in Production Layout and design. Some of the above examples would appear to fit the bill. However I have noted technical comments from the forums that appear contradictory. Whilst I appreciate that all Designers will inevitably have their own preferences all comments appear restricted and clouded by individual opinion, which is fair enough I guess on a Designer’s Forum. However I am looking for an impartial and unbiased opinion free of established dogma, and in this regard I would be grateful for some guidance which may be of general interest to a wider audience with similar requirements in this market.

    I have the need to create an ONline News Publication and Interactive Blog to support the creation of a new global News Brand. The design must incorporate flexible multi-column layouts and a Blog along the lines e.g. Selected content will also be distributed to and responsively leveraged by Social Medial Networks using an incorporated interactive Blog. It must be cross browser enabled, and capable of auto- sizing to any screen size or any PC or mobile platform. Pages will selectively monetised and SEO’d for the target audience. All content and pages need to be searchable/retrievable and fully archived.

    I previously made the mistake of approaching the project employing a general design brief using e.g. Joopla, Drupal, WordPress platforms etc, all of which were recommended by various Designers involving a complete Design/build from scratch and as result was persuaded to buy into the Carrington/Crowdfavorite Theme Template Technology by a Designer could never get it to work properly. I have recently come to realise that a lot of the ‘heavy lifting’ has already been done if one of the above or similar Customisable Newspaper Themed Templates are used. This begs the question as to which one. Designers will inevitably have a personal preference that may or may not be the best available for my particular purpose. I have also noted the latest buzz words in Template Theme Design such as Responsive, Fluid, and HD but am confused as to how necessary and relevant they actually are.

    My need is to create something that looks, feels, and is ‘state of the art’ in Newspaper Design(as opposed to Magazine Design many of which look like interactive web sites), which consequently determines the fundamental design philosophy and platform employed. From an Editor’s perspective I essentially need a WYSWYG EDITOR with drag and drop capability, allowing me to control and alter the page content and positioning instantly and at any time without any coding required. I realise that a degree of customisation will inevitably be necessary in order to give me exactly what I want, and consequently will ultinately require the skills of a good designer. However I need to choose the best Template for the job that provides the widest possible degree of design flexibility and functionality technically from the onset, whilst leaving all editorial functions in the hands of a non technically experienced Editor. I would greatly appreciate your suggestions and advice.

    Best Regards
    Ron Smith

  18. 27

    This is is actually a good idea! There is less articles that cover plugins. If your up to that, the task is yours ;)

  19. 28

    Hi there,
    Surely that all theme are old but thanks for your post so much, it must be helpful with someone.

    We have just launched our first childtheme at
    It have great design and feature. Take a tour with us!!

    Cheers up.

  20. 29

    Nice tips here Andreas!
    Those plugins you have mentioned are used on or ? What theme / plugins are used there? I assume you are involved in desgining those sites? PLease let me know if it is possible to get some basic info about themes/plugins used on them and if there are any custom coded solutions? Sorry to be so blant here, bu I am working on similar solution and looking for solid examples to learn from.


    PS: all the best for a new year ;)

    • 30

      Christoffer Larsson

      January 7, 2013 7:46 am

      Hi Lukas!
      The plugin Arlima and the themes used at and are created and maintained by my coworkers at Västerbottens-Kuriren (VK). If you want to get in touch with us for more questions you’ll find all necessary information at the Arlima Github page:

      Also, thx for the shout-out Andreas!

      /Christoffer, co-creator of, folkbladet and Arlima

  21. 31

    Nice advice over here ,

    I am looking magazine theme ( solution and looking for solid examples (Websites).

    I would like to know if we can get Mashable like thmes :)

    • 32

      Taavi Vaimel

      June 10, 2013 2:09 am

      I have next article ready in my computer. I look there exactly into mashable like themes.
      I was drafted into military (national service), so thats why it has been a year until i can publish new article. I hope SM will still let me publish rest of WP best series articles :)!

  22. 33

    Thanks Taavi, These are some awesome themes. :) :) :) This article is a great help in helping decide what direction to take our newspaper websites. After seeing these themes is much more plausible for our team to take the WordPress route.

  23. 34

    Is there an update to this article? I’m looking for a theme for a local online newspaper. Thank you!

  24. 35

    I have searched online for the best WordPress newspaper themes for days, but find that many of your guys recommend the similar options like So, I think I can narrow down my choices to pick through your same recommendations.


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