Best Romance Anime to Watch Next

Romance films and series focus on passion, emotion, and the many challenges facing two (or more) individuals as they fall in love. Fans of the romantic genre are missing out on some of the best storylines if they avoid romance anime. Most anime films and series offer romance in some way, whether it be a shonen anime, where a few characters spend a great deal of time with romantic tension between them, or a supernatural dark fantasy, where one character saves the other, and they begin a relationship.

While these anime movies and series may only use romantic relationships as a subplot, there are plenty of great ones that focus entirely on the developing relationships between their characters. People appreciate a good love story that pushes them on an emotional rollercoaster of happiness, sadness, anger, betrayal, and a number of other emotions. Whether you are looking for complicated harems, angsty plotlines, or the classic will-they-won’t-they trope, here are the 20 best romance anime to watch next.

Updated on October 19, 2023, by Soniya Hinduja: This article has been updated with additional content to keep the discussion fresh and relevant with even more information and new entries.

20 My Dress-Up Darling

Stream on Crunchyroll

My Dress-Up Darling

A truly heartwarming anime that combines harem and cosplay to weave a beautiful story, My Dress-Up Darling centers around high school student Wakana Gojou who harbors a secret within him – he loves making dresses for dolls. Inheriting the skill from his grandfather, Wakana works hard to perfect the art but never lets it known to his peers for fear of being ridiculed.

When he befriends popular and breathtaking Marin Kitagawa, she notices something different about him and soon discovers his hobby. Turns out, Marin also has a hobby of her own: cosplay. As Marin takes sewing lessons from Wakana and coaches him on becoming a master cosplayer, the two develop a tender romance. The series captures the idea of exploring creativity and passion with the person you like.

19 Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai

Stream on Hulu

Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai

Quite surprising in its premise, this 2018 anime subverts its own scandalous title by being poignant and whimsical. Set in a world where teenagers suffer from “Puberty Syndrome,” which indicates the presence of paranormal quirks, we follow a shy and aloof guy named Sakuta Azusagawa, who, unlike his other classmates, believes that the myth is true.

More so when he encounters Mia, a former actress who retired for reasons unknown. Apparently, she now roams the corridors of the high school in a bunny costume and is visible only to Sakuta. The two form a friendship and Sakuta vows to get to the bottom of her condition. Eventually, Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai sees them developing an adorable, adolescent romance.

18 Maid-Sama!

Stream on Hulu


Maid-Sama! is as breezy as it is bold. The series is inarguably the best romantic comedy and it features a delightful push-and-pull between two very opposite characters. On one side, we have Misaki, who has created a formidable reputation in high school as “Demon President” by being the first-ever female student council president in a male-dominated school.

On the other side, we have the cool heartthrob Usui, who often rejects proposals from girls for the sake of it. When Usui finds out that Misali secretly works at a maid café, there is an enormous clash between the two. The mutually charmed rivals go from being in each other’s thoughts to hand-holding in his humorous little series. Maid-Sama! follows the ideal rom-com formula by balancing out its comedy and tenderness.

17 Given

Stream on Crunchyroll

Given anime

Based on the manga illustrated by Natsuki Kizu, Given explores love and loss among its four crucial characters. The series is known for being one of the swooniest BL anime. It follows Ritsuka, Mafuyu, Akihiko, and Haruki, four bandmates brought together through music and sticking together to heal each other’s hidden wounds.

A Gibson-clutching Mafuyu Satou meets a mysterious Ritsuka Uenoyama and what begins is a lyrical exchange of the souls. Slowly, we learn about their pasts and how they share traumas. Akihiko and Haruki form the secondary couple in the series but are just as passionate about one another. Watching the feelings of these two pairs gracefully blossom is the sweetest thing ever.

16 I Want To Eat Your Pancreas

Stream on Apple TV

I Want to Eat Your Pancreas (2018)

An exquisite anime that not only breaks your heart but also shakes you to the core, I Want To Eat Your Pancreas centers around the introverted bookworm Haruki who is so involved in his own little world that he never registers anything else.

One day, he stumbles upon a journal, titled Living with Dying, and begins reading it and learns that his aloof classmate Sakura is secretly battling a terminal illness. At first, he’s unbothered, but the more he learns about Sakura, the more enchanted he is by her spirit and buoyancy. They form a tender bond that shifts Haruki’s worldview. Be warned though, the anime will leave you utterly shattered by the depth of their relationship and how inevitable it is for their love to end.

Related: The 15 Best Horror Anime TV Shows, Ranked by Rotten Tomatoes

15 Your Lie in April

Stream on Hulu

Your Lie in April
A-1 Pictures

Released in May 2015, Your Lie in April is a romantic drama anime series adapted from Naoshi Arakawa’s manga series of the same name. The series follows Kosei Arima, a 14-year-old piano prodigy who becomes famous after winning several music competitions. However, after his mother dies, Kosei has a mental breakdown at a piano recital, resulting in him becoming unable to hear his piano, despite his hearing being unaffected otherwise.

Two years later, Kosei has not touched the piano and views the world in monochrome. He doesn’t focus on excelling in anything and spends most of his time with his friends Tsubaki Sawabe and Ryota Watari. However, when Kosei meets the audacious, free-spirited, 14-year-old violinist Kaori Miyazono, his life turns upside down. Kaori helps Kosei get back into playing and shows him that his playing style can be free. As the two get closer, he realizes he’s falling in love, though she seems to only be interested in Ryota.

14 Inuyasha

Stream on Netflix

Madman Entertainment

Originally running from 2009 to 2010, with four feature films and a sequel spin-off, Inuyasha is a fantasy adventure romance shonen anime series. It follows Kagome Higurashi, a 15-year-old middle school girl from modern-day Tokyo who falls into a well in her family shrine, transporting her to the Sengoku period. There, she meets the half-dog demon half-human Inuyasha. The sacred Shikon jewel reemerges from Kagome’s body, and it shatters into dozens of fragments that scatter across Japan.

So, Kagome and Inuyasha, joined by the monk Miroku, demon slayer Sango, and fox demon Shippo, journey to restore the jewel before it falls into the hands of the evil half-demon Naraku. Kagome is the reincarnation of Kikyo, who was in love with Inuyasha. As Kagome and Inuyasha travel to Japan together, they fall in love and eventually marry.

13 Snow White with the Red Hair

Stream on Crunchyroll

Snow White with the Red Hair

Snow White with the Red Hair is a fantasy romance anime that aired from 2015 to 2016 in Japan. The series follows the titular Shirayuki, a herbalist in the Tanbarun kingdom with unique red hair that attracts a lot of attention. Due to this, she was raised to always be careful of showing her hair in public, tying it up with a red ribbon.

The first prince, Raj, learns of her unusual hair and orders her to become his concubine, which Shirayuki refuses. She flees to the neighboring kingdom of Clarines, where she meets and befriends Prince Zen and his two aides, Mitsuhide and Kiki. She ends up working as a royal court herbalist in Clarines. However, Prince Raj develops feelings for Shirayuki and tries to become a leader she can be proud of. In Clarines, Zen and Shirayuki begin to fall in love.

12 Your Name

Buy/Rent on Prime Video

Your Name
Commix Wave Films

Inspired by Japan’s frequency of natural disasters, Your Name is a romantic fantasy film that was released in 2016. The film tells the story of two high school students, Taki Tachibana and Mitsuha Miyamizu, who begin swapping bodies despite never having met.

They unleash chaos in each other’s lives, though they try to set up ground rules for each other by leaving notes on paper, their phones, and their skin. Taki realizes that he’s falling for Mitsuha and attempts to call her, though she does not answer. Then, the body-switching stops. So, Taki goes searching for her. Tip: have tissues nearby.

11 Fruits Basket

Stream on Hulu

Fruits Basket
Madman Entertainment

Fruits Basket is a supernatural romantic comedy, slice-of-life anime series that tells the story of an orphan girl who learns that 13 members of the Sohma family are possessed by the animals of the Chinese zodiac.

These members are cursed to turn into their animal forms at literally the worst times — when they are weak, stressed, or embraced by someone of the opposite gender who is not possessed by the spirit of the zodiac.

Related: 10 Anime That Are Completely Different from the Manga

10 Ouran High School Host Club

Stream on Hulu

Ouran High School Host Club

Based on the Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Bisco Hatori, Ouran High School Host Club is a reverse harem romantic comedy anime series following Haruhi Fujioka, a scholarship student at Ouran Academy, and the members of the host club. While searching for a quiet place to study, Haruhi stumbled upon the Host Club’s meeting place, where she accidentally destroys an expensive vase. To pay for it, she must work as the club’s errand boy.

The Hosts accidentally mistake her for a boy due to her short hair, slouching attire, and gender-ambiguous face. However, they soon realize her actual gender and that she’s naturally good at entertaining girls. So, they promoted her to a Host. At the same time, the other members, Tamaki Suoh, Kyoya Ootori, twins Hikaru and Kaoru Hitachiin, Mitsukuni “Honey” Haninozuka, and Takashi “Mori” Morinozuka, all grow feelings for her.

9 Toradora!

Stream on Netflix

J.C. Staff

Toradora! is a 25-episode anime adaptation that aired from October 2008 to March 2009. The series tells the story of Ryuji Takasu and Taiga Aisaka as they help each other confess their feelings to their respective crushes. The gentle Ryuji appears as an intimidating delinquent due to his eyes and has a crush on Minori Kushieda, whose best friend is Taiga.

Taiga is considered the school’s “most dangerous animal of the highest risk level.” He has a negative attitude towards others and often snaps violently at people. She lives in an apartment facing Ryuji’s house and has a crush on Ryuji’s best friend, Yusaku Kitamura.

8 A Whisker Away

Stream on Netflix

A Whisker Away
Studio Colorido

Released on Netflix in 2020, A Whisker Away is an anime romantic fantasy film. The film tells the story of Miyo Sasaki, an unhappy eighth grader in Tokoname, Aichi Prefecture. She and her stepmother, Kaoru, do not get along, and she is constantly getting rejected by her crush, Kento Hinode.

Things begin to change when she receives a magical Noh mask that allows her to transform into a cat. Miyo uses this newfound power to spend time with Hinode, though the longer she stays in cat form has its consequences.

7 The Ancient Magus’ Bride

Stream on Crunchyroll

The Ancient Magus Bride
Wit Studio

A romantic slice-of-life storyline set in a surreal and supernatural world, The Ancient Magus’ Bride is a must-watch anime series. It aired from October 2017 to March 2018, a three-part OVA series in September 2021, and a second season that premiered in April 2023.

The series tells the story of Chise Hatori, an orphaned high school student who has been ostracized by her relatives and society. She sells herself at an auction so someone else could take her in and she could have a new home. She is bought by Elias Ainsworth, a seven-foot-tall humanoid with an animal skull for a head, who seems closer to a demon than a human.

6 5 Centimeters Per Second

Buy/Rent on Prime Video

5 centimeters per second
CoMix Wave Inc.

5 Centimeters Per Second is a 2007 romantic drama anime film consisting of three segments that each follow a period in the life of Takaki Tono and his relationships. The first segment, Cherry Blossom, begins in 1991 when Tono is in elementary school where he befriends Akari Shinohara after she transferred to his school.

The second segment is Cosmonaut, which begins in 1999 when Tono is in his third year of high school. A classmate of his, Kanae Sumida, is in love with him, but Tono is still hooked on Shinohara. The final segment, 5 Centimeters Per Second, returns to the present day of 2008 and Tono is still in love with Shinohara. The segment depicts their lives during this time and the parallels.

Related: The All-Time 10 Best Villains from Superhero Anime

5 Horimiya

Stream on Hulu

Hoods Entertainment

Adapted from the manga series Hori-san to Miyamura-kun, Horimiya is a romantic comedy anime series that aired from January to April 2021, with a second anime series titled Horimiya: The Missing Pieces that premiered in July 2023. The series follows the developing relationship between Kyouko Hori, a bright and popular high school student, and Izumi Miyamura, a gloomy and seemingly nerdy, glasses-wearing boy.

To everyone else, the thought of these two getting along would be the last thing they would expect. However, in a fateful meeting, the two bear their hidden selves. With their opposite personalities yet sharing odd similarities, the two quickly become friends and share with each other a side of themselves concealed from the rest of the world.

4 Love Tyrant

Stream on Crunchyroll

Love Tyrant
EMT Squared

Airing from April to June 2017, Love Tyrant is a supernatural romantic comedy harem anime series following a high school student named Seiji Aino.

Seiji becomes trapped in a polyamorous relationship with four wildly different girls: the sadistic psychopath Shikimi Shiramine, the defensively shy Yuzu Kichougasaki, the annoying angel cupid Guri, and the violently obsessive Akane Hiyama. Also, Seiji must show Guri how to use her Kiss Note properly, a magical object that brings couples together, while also teaching her about true love.

3 Beyond the Boundary

Stream on Fubo TV

Beyond the Boundary
Kyoto Animation

Airing between October and December 2013, Beyond the Boundary is a supernatural romance anime series set in Kashihara, Nara. The series follows an immortal half-spirit young boy named Akihito Kanbara. He is the offspring of a Youmu, a supernatural creature that materializes from human animosity, and a human.

After saving a girl named Mirai Kuriyama from committing suicide, Akihito learns that she is a spirit world warrior, and their lives become intertwined. An OVA episode was released in 2014 and a two-part anime film premiered in March and April 2015.

2 I’ve Always Liked You

Stream on Crunchyroll

I've Always Liked You

I’ve Always Liked You is a 2016 youth romance anime film based on the “Kokuhaku Jikko Iinkai ~Ren’ai Series!” Vocaloid song project by Honeyworks. The film follows a group of high school friends who struggle with confessing their love.

The story begins with Natsuki Enomoto, a third-year at Sakuragaoka High School who feels unrequited love for her childhood friend, Yu Setoguchi. Unable to confess to her feelings, Natsuki tells him that she is using him as a stand-in to practice confessing her love. As Natsuki continues to hide her feelings, her classmate Koyuki Ayase asks her out on a date. Now, Natsuki must try to stop practicing and actually confess her love to Yu.

1 Tonikawa: Over the Moon for You

Stream on Crunchyroll

Tonikawa over the moon for you
Seven Arcs

Fly Me to the Moon, also known as Tonikawa: Over the Moon for You outside of Japan, is a science fiction, slice-of-life romantic comedy anime series that aired from October to December 2020, with a second season and a four-episode ONA airing in 2023. The series follows Nasa Yuzaki who encounters a beautiful girl after receiving his high school practice exam grades. He tries to talk to her but gets hit by a truck.

The girl saves him, and he follows her to a bus stop and confesses his love for her. The girl, Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, agrees to be his girlfriend only if they get married first. However, Nasa passes out and when he awakes in the hospital, he cannot find her. He does not see her again until his 18th birthday when she suddenly shows up with a marriage form.

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