The 50 Best Romance Anime of All Time

The 50 Best Romance Anime of All Time

When it comes to anime, we deal with a wide range of topics. Think again if you thought anime was only about supernatural, mecha, and action. The anime genres are diverse, with romance being one of the most popular. The romance genre is further subdivided into numerous subgenres, ensuring that there is something for everyone. On the one hand, there are lighthearted romantic comedies, and on the other, dramatic romances.

Romance genres may also be found in Shjo (targeted at adolescent female demographic) anime or slice of life. There is no such thing as strict clubbing here. Having said that,here are 50 best romance anime of all time.

1. Toradora!

best romance anime

Ryuuji Takasu is a gentle high school student who enjoys housework; however, his intimidating face often leads to him being labelled as a delinquent. Taiga Aisaka, on the other hand, is a small, doll-like student who is anything but a cute and fragile girl. Taiga, armed with a wooden katana and a fiery personality, is known as the “Palmtop Tiger” throughout the school.

An embarrassing blunder brings the two students together one day. Ryuuji learns that Taiga has a soft side: she has a crush on the popular vice president, Yuusaku Kitamura, who also happens to be his best friend. But things get even crazier when Ryuuji admits to having a crush on Taiga’s best friend, Minori Kushieda!

Toradora! is a romantic comedy that follows this odd couple as they embark on a quest to help each other with their crushes, forming an unlikely alliance in the process.

2. Your Lie in April

The path of the human metronome, the prodigious pianist Kousei Arima, is accompanied by music. However, following the death of his mother, Saki Arima, Kousei enters a downward spiral, rendering him unable to hear the sound of his own piano.

Kousei still avoids the piano, leaving behind his admirers and rivals, and lives a colourless life with his friends Tsubaki Sawabe and Ryouta Watari two years later. Everything changes, however, when he meets Kaori Miyazono, a beautiful violinist who shakes up his world and sends him on a journey to face music again.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, based on the manga series of the same name, tells the story of Kousei’s recovery as he discovers that music is more than just playing each note perfectly, and that a single melody can bring in the fresh spring air of April.

3. Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai

Puberty Syndrome, a rare and inexplicable condition, is thought to be a myth. It is a rare disease that only affects teenagers, and its symptoms are so supernatural that few recognise it as a genuine occurrence. However, Sakuta Azusagawa, a high school student, knows from personal experience that it is very real and is quite common in his school.

Mai Sakurajima is a third-year high school student who rose to fame as a child actress in her youth but recently ended her promising career for reasons unknown to the public. She is well known throughout the school, but no one dares to interact with her—that is, until Sakuta notices her wandering the library in a bunny girl costume. Despite her outfit, no one seems to notice her, and when he confronts her, he realises she is another victim of Puberty Syndrome. As Sakuta tries to assist Mai in her situation, his actions bring him into contact with more girls infected with the enigmatic disease.

4. Darling in the FranXX

In the distant future, giant beasts known as Klaxosaurs have driven humanity to near-extinction, forcing the survivors to seek refuge in massive fortress cities known as Plantations. Children raised here are trained in boy-girl pairs to pilot giant mechas known as FranXX—the only weapons known to be effective against Klaxosaurs. These children, bred for the sole purpose of piloting these machines, know nothing of the outside world and can only prove their existence by defending their race.

Hiro, an aspiring FranXX pilot, has lost motivation and self-confidence as a result of a failed aptitude test. Hiro retreats to a forest lake after missing his class’ graduation ceremony, where he meets a mysterious girl with two horns growing out of her head.

She introduces herself as Zero Two, the codename of an infamous FranXX pilot known as the “Partner Killer.” The Plantation is rocked by an unexpected Klaxosaur attack before Hiro can digest the encounter. Zero Two engages the creature in her FranXX, but it sustains significant damage in the fight and crashes near Hiro. When Zero Two discovers that her partner has been killed, she invites Hiro to pilot the mecha with her, and the pair easily defeats the Klaxosaur in the ensuing battle. Hiro has been given a second chance at redemption with a new partner by his side, but at what cost?

5. Elfen Lied

Lucy is a “Diclonius,” a special breed of human born with a short pair of horns and invisible telekinetic hands, which makes her a victim of the government’s inhumane scientific experimentation. However, when an opportunity to flee presents itself, Lucy, corrupted by confinement and torture, unleashes a torrent of bloodshed as she flees her captors.

During her breakout, she suffers a crippling head injury, leaving her with a split personality: a harmless child with limited speech capacity. In this state of flux, she comes across two college students, Kouta and his cousin Yuka, who unknowingly take in an injured fugitive, unaware of her murderous tendencies. This act of kindness will transform their lives, as they are soon drawn into the shadowy world of government secrecy and conspiracy.

6. Clannad

Tomoya Okazaki is a delinquent who believes he will never amount to anything. He skips school and plans to waste his high school days with his friend Youhei Sunohara.

While walking to school one day, Tomoya notices a young girl muttering quietly to herself. Without warning, she exclaims “Anpan!” (a popular Japanese food), drawing Tomoya’s attention. He soon learns that the girl’s name is Nagisa Furukawa and that she exclaims things she likes to motivate herself. Nagisa claims they are now friends, but Tomoya walks away, dismissing the encounter.

Tomoya, on the other hand, notices Nagisa more and more around school. He eventually relents and befriends her. Nagisa has been held back a year due to a severe illness, and her dream is to resurrect the school’s drama club, which Tomoya discovers. Claiming he has nothing better to do, he decides to assist her in achieving this goal with the assistance of four other girls.

Tomoya learns more about the girls and their problems as he spends more time with them. As he tries to assist each girl in overcoming her particular challenge, he realises that life isn’t as dull as he once thought.

7. Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru

Hachiman Hikigaya is a narcissistic and semi-nihilistic high school student. He is convinced that joyful youth is a farce, and that anyone who claims otherwise is deceiving themselves.

In a novel punishment for writing an essay mocking modern social relationships, Hachiman’s teacher forces him to join the Volunteer Service Club, a club that aims to assist any student in achieving their goals.

With only the beautiful ice queen Yukino Yukinoshita as a club member, Hachiman finds himself on the front lines of other people’s problems—a position he never imagined he’d be in. Will Hachiman’s skewed view of society prove to be a hindrance or a tool he can use to his advantage as he and Yukino use their wits to solve many of the students’ problems?

8. Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions!

Everyone has gone through a period in their lives when they believed they were unique and distinguished from the masses of ordinary people. They may even believe they are capable of wielding mystical powers or that they are descended from a fantasy realm. This “disease” is known as “chuunibyou,” and it is frequently the source of some of a person’s most embarrassing moments.

The scars left by his chuunibyou are still fresh for Yuuta Togashi. He looks back on his middle school years as the “Dark Flame Master” with extreme embarrassment, so much so that he decides to attend a high school far away where no one will recognise him.He longs to put his dark past behind him and live a normal high school life.

Unfortunately, he hasn’t yet moved on from his past: enter Rikka Takanashi, Yuuta’s new classmate and self-proclaimed vessel of the “Wicked Eye.” As this eccentric young girl enters Yuuta’s life, his dream of a normal, chuunibyou-free existence crumbles. In this hilarious and heartwarming story about a boy who just wants to forget his embarrassing memories, old delusions are far from extinct.

9. The Pet Girl of Sakurasou

The Sakura-sou dormitory at Suimei High is notorious for housing the school’s most notorious delinquents. As a result, when the relatively mild-mannered Sorata Kanda is transferred to the dorm, escaping this insane asylum becomes his top priority. For the time being, he is trapped there and must learn how to interact with his fellow residents, who include bubbly animator Misaki Kamiigusa, charming playboy writer Jin Mitaka, and the ever-reclusive Ryuunosuke Akasaka. Sorata frequently finds solace in his interactions with his one “normal” friend, aspiring voice actress Nanami Aoyama.

Sorata is captivated by Mashiro Shiina, a new foreign exchange student, who joins the dormitory. Mashiro is an autistic savant beneath her otherworldly appearance, capable of world-renowned brilliance in her art but unable to perform simple daily tasks. When Sorata is put in charge of caring for Mashiro, the two inevitably become closer, with Sorata’s initial desire to escape the dormitory becoming a distant memory.

Despite their eccentricities, each resident excels in their respective fields, leaving Sorata to deal with his own lack of any particular skill. With brilliance all around him, he strives to be on par with their abilities. Sakura-sou no Pet na Kanojo is a heartwarming coming-of-age tale of friendship, love, ambition, and heartbreak told through the eyes of an ordinary person surrounded by the extraordinary, revolving around the hardships and joys of its colourful cast.

10. Howl’s Moving Castle

That jumbled structure, that cacophony of hissing steam and creaking joints, with smoke billowing from it as it moves on its own… That castle is home to the magnificent wizard Howl, who is infamous in Sophie Hatter’s small town for both his magical prowess and for being a womaniser. Sophie, the plain daughter of a hatmaker, has little hope for the future and is content to work hard in the shop.

Sophie’s simple life, however, takes an exciting turn when she becomes entangled in a disturbing situation and the mysterious wizard appears to rescue her. Unfortunately, despite the brief encounter, the vain and vengeful Witch of the Waste—in a fit of jealousy caused by a previous disagreement with Howl—casts a curse on the maiden, turning her into an old woman.

Sophie must accompany Howl and a slew of eccentric companions—ranging from a powerful fire demon to a hopping scarecrow—in his living castle on a perilous adventure as a raging war tears their kingdom apart in order to return to normalcy.

11. Maid Sama!

best romance anime

Misaki Ayuzawa is a one-of-a-kind phenomenon at Seika High School. Through her honesty and diligence, she became the first female student council president in a predominantly male institution. Misaki has been working tirelessly to improve the school life of all girls since she was promoted to the position. Despite this, Misaki is extremely strict with the boys, earning her the title “Demon President.”

After hearing a girl cry in the hallway one day, Misaki runs into Takumi Usui, the most popular boy in school, as he rejects a love confession. Misaki, enraged by what she sees, reprimands him for making the girl cry. Usui, on the other hand, is unconcerned and dismisses it as insignificant.

Misaki unexpectedly runs into Usui again, but this time she is working at a maid cafe! Embarrassed that someone has discovered her secret occupation, Misaki vows to herself that she will not let Usui ruin her reputation. However, the mysterious boy has begun to return to the same cafe on a regular basis in order to observe and tease Misaki. Will Usui be able to keep the president’s secret when the chips are down?

12. Clannad: After Story

The sequel to the critically acclaimed slice-of-life series Clannad, Clannad: After Story, begins after Tomoya Okazaki and Nagisa Furukawa graduate from high school. They go through the emotional ups and downs of growing up together. Unsure of his future path, Tomoya discovers the value of a strong work ethic and the strength of Nagisa’s support. They push forward to confront their personal problems, deepen their old relationships, and form new bonds because of the couple’s dedication and unity of purpose.

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Time passes in the Illusionary World as well. As winter approaches, the Illusionary Girl and the Garbage Doll are confronted with a difficult situation that reveals the World’s true purpose.

Clannad: After Story is an impactful drama based on Key’s visual novel and produced by Kyoto Animation. It emphasises the importance of family and the struggles of adulthood.

13. Nisekoi

Raku Ichijou, a first-year student at Bonyari High School, is the sole heir to a powerful yakuza family. Raku made a promise to a childhood friend ten years ago. All he has now is a pendant with a lock that can only be opened with the key that the girl took with her when they parted ways.

Years later, Raku has matured into a typical adolescent, wishing to remain as uninvolved in his yakuza background as possible while spending his school days with his middle school crush Kosaki Onodera.When the American Bee Hive Gang invades his family’s territory, Raku’s idyllic romantic dreams are thrown out the window as he is dragged into a frustrating conflict: Raku is to pretend to be in a romantic relationship with Chitoge Kirisaki, the beautiful daughter of the Bee Hive’s chief, in order to reduce friction between the two groups. Unfortunately, reality is far from this blatant lie—Raku and Chitoge fall in love at first sight, as the girl believes he is a pathetic pushover, and Chitoge is about as attractive to Raku as a savage gorilla.

Nisekoi follows the daily antics of this mismatched couple who have been forced to get along in order to keep the peace in the city. With many more girls appearing in his life, all of whom are somehow connected to Raku’s past, his search for the girl who holds his heart and his promise takes him in unexpected directions.

14. Horimiya

best romance anime

On the surface, the idea of Kyouko Hori and Izumi Miyamura getting along would appear to be the furthest thing from people’s minds. After all, Hori possesses the ideal combination of beauty and intelligence, whereas Miyamura appears meek and distant to his classmates. However, a fateful encounter between the two reveals both of their hidden selves. Hori is popular at school, but due to housework, she has little time to socialise with her friends. Miyamura, on the other hand, lives under the noses of his peers, his body covered in secret tattoos and piercings that make him appear to be a gentle delinquent.

Despite having opposing personalities, the two quickly become friends and frequently spend time together in Hori’s home. As they both emerge from their shells, they share a side of themselves that is hidden from the outside world.

15. Ouran High School Host Club

Ouran High is a school for the exceptionally wealthy or, in Haruhi’s case, the exceptionally talented. When Haruhi inadvertently drops an eight million yen vase in a music room, no amount of talent will help. The vase belonged to the Ouran High School Host Club, a group of attractive young men who provide their time and affections for a fee to their lovesick clientele: female students. Fascinated by this strange new specimen, a poor and clumsy commoner, they force Haruhi to work for them until the debt is repaid; however, they get far more than they bargained for…

16. My Little Monster

In a brand new love story, an impassive girl meets a troublemaker! Mizutani Shizuku, a girl whose only interest is studying, is asked to deliver some handouts to Yoshida Haru, a boy who hasn’t shown up to school since spilling blood on the first day, and she finds herself the object of his affection. This is a story about a boy and a girl who are dealing with issues of love and friendship. Opening yourself up to others forces you to be truthful with yourself.

17. ReLIFE

Arata Kaizaki (27) left the job he got after graduation after only three months. After that, things did not go well for him. His parents have threatened to stop sending him money and want him to return to the country. He has no friend or girlfriend with whom to share his woes…as he reaches rock bottom, a strange man named Ryo Yoake appears. Yoake invites Kaizaki to join ReLife, a societal rehabilitation programme for NEETs. This programme uses an unknown drug to age him and sends him back to high school for a year…

18. Golden Time

Banri Tada is a new student at a Tokyo-based private law school. However, he lost all of his memories as a result of an accident. During freshman orientation, he meets another freshman from the same school, Mitsuo Yanagisawa, and they immediately hit it off. Without any recollection of each other, their lives become increasingly intertwined, as if by chance. But what will happen to them, and will it lead to happiness or just another memory to forget…

19. 5 Centimeters per Second

Tono Takaki and Shinohara Akari are now separated by a family move shortly after elementary school, but they were once two shy young students brought together by their shared differences from their peers. Because of this, the two formed a close bond that has endured through their ongoing correspondence, despite the fact that they are separated by such a long distance. They both secretly fear that their bond will deteriorate over time, so they arrange a meeting for just the two of them.

The journeys they both take in their minds and lives create an atmosphere of intense emotional upheaval as well as a sense of peace. It is a twist of fate and a series of decisions that have put the two in a position to carry what they choose from their pasts into the future they have created for themselves.

20. Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun

Chiyo Sakura, a high school girl who has fallen in love with her classmate Umetaro Nozaki, decides to be brave one day and asks him out. Her emotions were not properly conveyed, and before she knew it, she was helping him with a specific job as an assistant… The series is a shojo manga boy comedy that revolves around Nozaki, a high school boy who is a popular shojo manga artist, and has a story woven by very unique characters.

21. Plastic Memories

Tsukasa Mizugaki, eighteen, has failed his college entrance exams, but after pulling some strings, he lands a job at the Sion Artificial Intelligence Corporation. SAI Corp is responsible for the development of “Giftias,” which are highly advanced androids that are nearly indistinguishable from normal humans. Giftias, on the other hand, have a maximum lifespan of 81,920 hours, or approximately nine years and four months. Tsukasa’s station, Terminal Service One, is in charge of collecting Giftias that have reached their expiration date before they lose their memories and become hostile.

Tsukasa is quickly partnered with a lovely Giftia named Isla after joining Terminal Service One. Despite her petite stature and calm demeanour, she is a Terminal Service veteran and considered the best in Giftia retrievals. However, time is of the essence, and Tsukasa must confront his feelings for Isla before her time runs out. Nothing lasts forever, no matter how much someone desires it.

22. Chivalry of a Failed Knight

There are only a few humans in the world who can manipulate their souls to create powerful weapons. These people, dubbed “Blazers,” study and train at the prestigious Hagun Academy to become Mage-Knights; among them is so-called failure Ikki Kurogane, the only F-rated Blazer. When the academy’s worst student sees Stella Vermillion, an A-ranked Blazer who also happens to be a princess, naked, she challenges him to a duel with dire consequences—the loser becomes the slave of the winner. Stella couldn’t possibly lose, right?

Rakudai Kishi no Cavalry follows Ikki as he tries to prove his strength to a world that believes he is the weakest, all the while making new friends, gaining wisdom, and gaining experience.

23. Kimi ni Todoke

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Sawako Kuronuma is known for her resemblance to the Sadako character from The Ring series, and she is misunderstood to be frightening and malicious like her fictional counterpart, despite having a timid and sweet personality. Sawako is naturally drawn to the cheerful and friendly Shouta Kazehaya, the most popular boy in her class, as she longs to make friends and live a normal life. Sawako has admired Kazehaya’s ability to be the centre of attention since their first meeting and aspires to be like him.

When Kazehaya organises a bravery test for the entire class and encourages Sawako to participate, she sees it as an opportunity to bond with her classmates, beginning with Ayane Yano and Chizuru Yoshida. Sawako believes that meeting Kazehaya has changed her for the better with each new encounter and emotion she encounters. Sawako has no idea how her presence has affected Kazehaya.

24. Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii

The energetic Narumi Momose is running late for her first day of work at a new office after sleeping through all four of her alarms. As she rushes to catch her train, she vows to herself that none of her coworkers will discover her dark secret: she is an otaku and a fujoshi. Her plan, however, is thwarted when she runs into Hirotaka Nifuji, an old middle school friend. Although she attempts to keep her secret by inviting him out for drinks after work, her cover is blown when he casually inquires about her attendance at the upcoming Summer Comiket. Fortunately for her, the only witnesses—Hanako Koyanagi and Tarou Kabakura—are also otaku.

Later that night, the two go out for drinks to catch up after all these years apart. Hirotaka suggests dating a fellow otaku, specifically himself, after Narumi complains about her previous boyfriend breaking up with her because he refused to date a fujoshi. He makes a solemn promise to always be there for her, to support her, and to assist her in her quest for rare Monster Hunter drops. Narumi, taken aback by the proposal, agrees immediately. As a result, the two otaku begin dating, and their adorablely awkward romance begins.

25. Blue Spring Ride

Futaba Yoshioka was an attractive and popular middle-schooler who was well liked by the opposite sex but shunned by the girls. Nonetheless, she was able to brush all of that aside because the only opinion that truly mattered to her was that of Kou Tanaka, a classmate with whom she once shared a rain shelter, followed by a slew of other priceless and meaningful memories. She even succeeded in making plans to meet with the quiet and innocent boy at the summer festival, but a simple misunderstanding, followed by Tanaka’s disappearance, left her walking the halls of her school friendless.

Futaba, who is now in high school, is not your typical adolescent girl. She avoids all unwanted attention and, instead of acting cute and feminine, only stands out through her tomboyish behaviour and dishevelled appearance, determined to become a class favourite this time. But her world is soon turned upside down when the only boy she’s ever liked unexpectedly reappears in her life—except he now goes by the name Kou Mabuchi, and it’s not just his name that has changed.

26. Weathering With You

best romance anime

Tokyo is currently experiencing rain showers, which appear to be disrupting the normal pace of everyone who lives there to no end. In the midst of this seemingly endless downpour, Hodaka Morishima, a runaway high school student, arrives, struggling to support himself and eventually landing a job at a small-time publisher. At the same time, Hina Amano, an orphan, is looking for work to support herself and her younger brother.

Both fates are intertwined when Hodaka attempts to rescue Hina from shady men, and the two decide to flee together. As a result, Hodaka discovers Hina has a strange yet amazing power: she can summon the sun whenever she prays for it. Hodaka sees the potential of this ability in light of Tokyo’s unusual weather. He suggests that Hina become a “sunshine girl,” someone who clears the sky for people when they are in need.

Things start to look up for them at first. However, it is well known that power always comes at a high cost…

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27. Rent-a-Girlfriend

best romance anime

Kazuya Kinoshita, a 20-year-old college student, has a wonderful girlfriend named Mami Nanami. But he doesn’t anymore. Mami abruptly ends their relationship, leaving him heartbroken and lonely. To alleviate his pain, he hires a rental girlfriend through an online app. Chizuru Mizuhara is his partner, and she manages to win Kazuya’s affection with her unparalleled beauty and cute demeanour.

However, after reading about other customers’ similar experiences with Chizuru, Kazuya believes her warm smile and caring personality are all a ruse to play with his heart, and he rates her poorly.

Chizuru, enraged, slams him for his shameless hypocrisy, revealing her true pert and hot-tempered self. This one-sided exchange, however, is cut short when Kazuya learns that his grandmother has passed away.

They rush to the hospital, where they find Kazuya’s grandmother in good condition. She is perplexed by Chizuru’s presence and wonders who this girl is. On the spur of the moment, Kazuya declares that they are lovers, forcing Chizuru to play the part. But, with Kazuya still haunted by his previous relationship with Mami, how long can this difficult client and reluctant rental girlfriend maintain their act?

28. The Quintessential Quintuplets

Fuutarou Uesugi is an excellent high school student who leads an otherwise difficult life. His aloof personality and reclusive nature have left him friendless, and his father is in debt, forcing his family to eke out a living.

During his lunch break one day, Uesugi gets into an argument with a female transfer student who has claimed “his seat,” causing both of them to dislike each other. On the same day, he is presented with a golden opportunity to pay off his family’s debt: a private tutoring gig for a wealthy family’s daughter at five times the market rate. He accepts the proposal, but is shocked to learn that the client, Itsuki Nakano, is the same girl he confronted earlier!

After unsuccessfully attempting to regain Itsuki’s favour, Uesugi discovers that his problems do not end there: Itsuki is a quintuplet, so in addition to her, he must tutor her sisters—Miku, Yotsuba, Nino, and Ichika—who, despite the very real threat of failing, refuse to work with a tutor. However, his family’s livelihood is at stake, so Uesugi perseveres, adamant in his determination to cure the sisters’ aversion to studying and successfully lead them to graduation.

29. Kokoro Connect

When five Yamaboshi Academy students realise there are no clubs where they can fit in, they form the Student Cultural Society, or “StuCS” for short. Taichi Yaegashi, a die-hard wrestling fan; Iori Nagase, an unsure optimist; Himeko Inaba, a cool computer genius; Yui Kiriyama, a petite karate practitioner; and Yoshifumi Aoki, the class clown, make up the club.

Aoki and Yui have a strange incident one day when, without warning, they switch bodies for a short period of time. As this supernatural occurrence continues to occur at random among the five friends, they realise it is more than just a game. They soon discover each other’s hidden secrets and emotional scars, which could end up tearing the StuCS and their friendship apart.

30. I want to eat your pancreas

The aloof protagonist: a bookworm who is estranged from the world in which he lives. He has no interest in others and is certain that no one has any interest in him. His story starts when he discovers a handwritten book titled “Living with Dying.” He quickly recognises it as Sakura Yamauchi’s popular, bubbly classmate Sakura Yamauchi’s secret diary. She then tells him about her pancreatic disease and how she knows her time is running out.

Her terminal illness is only known to her family; even her closest friends are unaware. Despite this revelation, he has no sympathy for her plight, but caught in the currents of Sakura’s persistent buoyancy, he eventually agrees to accompany her for the rest of her days.

As the two polar opposites interact, their bond grows stronger, intertwining through the choices they make each day. Her apparent unpredictability and nonchalance disrupt the protagonist’s impassive flow of life, gradually opening his heart as he discovers and embraces the true meaning of living.

31. The Familiar of Zero

In a world of wands, cloaks, and royalty, Louise Françoise Le Blanc de La Vallière is a self-absorbed mage. Despite attending Tristain Academy, a prestigious school for magicians, Louise has a major problem: she is unable to properly cast magic, earning her the nickname “Louise the Zero” from her classmates.

Louise’s summoning causes a catastrophic explosion when first-year students are required to perform a summoning ritual! Everyone thinks this is yet another failure, but when the smoke clears, a young man named Saito Hiraga appears. Saito, Louise’s companion, is now treated as a slave, forced to clean her clothes and eat from the ground. However, when an unfamiliar brand is discovered etched on Saito’s hand as a result of the summoning ritual, it is thought to be the mark of a powerful familiar named Gandalfr.

Zero no Tsukaima is a wild, adventurous, and explosive story that follows Saito as he adjusts to his new life and Louise as she proves that she is more than her nickname suggests.

32. Yona of the Dawn

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The kingdom of Kouka is blessed with a lovely princess whose childlike innocence enchants all who meet her. Yona, her name, has grown up in the royal palace, safe from any danger that might come her way. All good things, however, must come to an end.

Yona’s perfect world is shattered when a heinous act of treason threatens to erase everything she cherishes, including her birthright as Princess of Kouka. She is forced to flee the palace because she has no one to trust but her childhood friend and loyal bodyguard Son Hak.

Yona realises that her kingdom is no longer the safe haven it once was when she is faced with the perils of surviving in the wild with a target on her back.

Yona vows to do everything in her power to become strong enough to crush her enemies now that she is free of the shackles of naivety. With Hak by her side, she must piece together the fragments of an ancient legend that may hold the key to reclaiming her kingdom from those who plotted to steal it from her.

33. Spice and Wolf

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Holo is a powerful wolf deity who is worshipped in Pasloe for blessing the annual harvest. However, as time passes and the villagers become more self-sufficient, Holo is reduced to a folktale. When a travelling merchant named Kraft Lawrence stops at the settlement, Holo offers to be his business partner in exchange for a ride to her northern home of Yoitsu. The astute trader recognises Holo’s unusual ability to assess a person’s character and agrees to her proposal.

Lawrence is getting closer to his goal of opening his own shop now that he has both sharp bargaining skills and a charismatic negotiator. However, as Lawrence travels the countryside with Holo in search of economic opportunities, he begins to notice that his ambitions are gradually changing into something unexpected.

34. Masamune-kun’s Revenge

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Masamune Makabe was rejected as a child by a rich, beautiful girl named Aki Adagaki, who gave him the nickname “Piggy” because he was overweight. Masamune, who was devastated, put in a lot of effort to work out in order to improve his appearance. Masamune, now a handsome but narcissistic high school student, is determined to exact vengeance: he will make Aki fall madly in love with him and then reject her the next time they meet.

Masamune is surprised to learn that he has transferred to Aki’s school. Masamune begins to form a relationship with the “Brutal Princess” after putting his plan into action, but despite his efforts, he fails miserably. Surprisingly, when Masamune finally gets around to carrying out his vengeance, he receives a mysterious letter addressed to him by his old nickname. Masamune’s plan is doomed before it even begins unless he discovers the sender’s identity!

35. Hotarubi no Mori e

Six-year-old Hotaru Takegawa, enthralled by the legend of a mountain god, gets lost in the ancient forest while visiting her uncle. Hotaru is exhausted and desperate for assistance when he discovers a masked forest spirit named Gin. She discovers the hard way that she should not touch the boy or he will vanish. Regardless, Gin leads Hotaru out of the forest and warns her not to return when she promises to return with a gift.

Hotaru and Gin become close friends when she visits him every summer, despite the fact that they are separated by both distance and planes of existence.

However, when romantic feelings clash with the one and only rule, their relationship and resolve are put to the test.

Hotarubi no Mori e, based on Yuki Midorikawa’s manga of the same name, is a story of friendship and compromise between two people who should never have crossed paths, as their lives become hopelessly intertwined.

36. Wolf Girl & Black Prince

best romance anime

Erika Shinohara has lied about her romantic exploits in order to gain the respect of her new friends. So, when they ask for a photo of her “boyfriend,” she quickly takes one of a handsome stranger, whom her friends recognise as the popular and kind-hearted Kyouya Sata.

Erika, caught in her own web of lies and desperate to avoid humiliation, explains her situation to Kyouya, hoping he will pretend to be her boyfriend. Kyouya, however, is not the angel he appears to be: he is a cruel sadist who forces Erika to become his “dog” in exchange for keeping her secret.

Erika reluctantly accepts his deal and soon begins to see glimpses of the real Kyouya beneath the multiple layers of his outer persona. As she falls for him, she can’t help but wonder if he’ll ever feel the same way about her. Will Kyouya finally turn Erika into an honest woman, or will she remain a “wolf girl” for the rest of her life?

37. Orange

best romance anime

The first day of Naho Takamiya’s sophomore year of high school is a tense one. She receives a strange letter addressed to her after waking up late. The letter, however, is from herself—ten years in the future! At first, Naho is sceptical of the note; however, after witnessing several of the events described, she realises the letter is indeed from her 26-year-old self.

The note states that Naho’s future life will be filled with regrets, and she hopes that her younger self will be able to correct the mistakes made in the past. The letter also warns her to keep a close eye on Kakeru Naruse, the new transfer student. Because Kakeru will not be present in the future, Naho must exercise extreme caution when making decisions involving him. With the letter as her guide, Naho now has the ability to protect Kakeru before she regrets it again.

38. InuYasha

Based on the same-named Shogakukan award-winning manga, InuYasha follows Kagome Higurashi, a fifteen-year-old girl whose normal life is turned upside down when a demon drags her into a cursed well on the grounds of her family’s Shinto shrine. Instead of reaching the bottom of the well, Kagome finds herself 500 years later, during Japan’s violent Sengoku period, with the demon’s true target, a wish-granting jewel known as the Shikon Jewel, reborn inside of her.

After a battle with a resurrected demon accidentally shatters the sacred jewel, Kagome enlists the help of Inuyasha, a young hybrid dog-demon/human, to collect the shards and keep them from falling into the wrong hands. Shippo, the orphan fox-demon, the intelligent monk Miroku, and the lethal demon slayer Sango join Kagome and Inuyasha on their quest. They must put aside their differences and work together to find the power-granting shards scattered throughout feudal Japan, as well as deal with the threats that arise.

39. Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches

best romance anime

Ryuu Yamada wanted to turn over a new leaf and lead a productive school life when he started high school. That’s why he chose Suzaku High, where no one would know about his violent delinquent past. However, much to Ryuu’s chagrin, he quickly becomes bored; now in his second year, Ryuu has reverted to his old ways—lazy, with abysmal grades, and always getting into fights.

Ryuu meets Urara Shiraishi, a beautiful honours student, on his way back from yet another office visit. A misstep sends them both tumbling down the stairs, resulting in an unintentional kiss! The couple discovers they can switch bodies with a kiss, which proves to be both useful and inconvenient.

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Toranosuke Miyamura, a student council officer and the sole member of the Supernatural Studies Club, recruits them for the club after learning of their new power. Soon joined by Miyabi Itou, an eccentric who is fascinated by all things supernatural, the group discovers the legend of the Seven Witches of Suzaku High, seven female students who have obtained various powers that can be activated by a kiss. The Supernatural Studies Club sets out on its first mission: to discover the identities of all of the witches.

40. Kamisama Kiss

best romance anime

Nanami Momozono, a high schooler, has been having a lot of problems lately, starting with her absentee father being in so much debt that they have lost everything. She comes across a man being harassed by a dog while downtrodden and homeless. She explains her situation after assisting him, and to her surprise, he offers her his home in gratitude. When she discovers that her new home is a dilapidated shrine, she attempts to flee, but is apprehended by two shrine spirits and a fox familiar named Tomoe. They mistake her for the man Nanami rescued, Mikage, the shrine’s land god. Tomoe leaves abruptly, refusing to serve a human after realising Mikage must have sent her there as a replacement god.

Rather than returning to the streets, Nanami devotes herself to her divine responsibilities. But if she is to keep things running smoothly, she will need the assistance of a certain fiery fox. In her bumbling attempt to track down Tomoe, she gets herself into trouble and ends up signing a contract with him. Now, as god and familiar, the two must travel the path of godhood together; however, it will not be easy, as new threats emerge in the form of a youkai who wants to devour the girl, a snake who wants to marry her, and Nanami’s own unexpected feelings for her new familiar.

41. Fruits Basket

best romance anime

Tooru Honda has always been fascinated by the Chinese Zodiac story that her beloved mother told her when she was a child. However, a sudden family tragedy alters her life, and subsequent events leave her completely alone. Tooru is now forced to live in a tent, but she has no idea that her temporary residence is on the private property of the illustrious Souma family. She meets Shigure, an older Souma cousin, and Yuki, the “prince” of her school one day after stumbling upon their home. Tooru explains that she lives nearby, but when the Soumas see her walking back to her tent one night, they discover her well-kept secret of being homeless.

Things start to look up for Tooru when they offer to take her in after hearing about her predicament. Soon after, however, she becomes embroiled in a fight between Yuki and his fiery cousin, Kyou. While attempting to stop them, she discovers that the Souma family has their own well-kept secret: whenever they are hugged by a member of the opposite sex, they transform into the animals of the Chinese Zodiac.

Tooru will discover that living with the Soumas is an unexpected adventure filled with laughter and romance as a result of this new revelation.

42. Domestic Girlfriend

best romance anime

Few things can hurt people more in their adolescence than the heartaches that come with unrequited love. This is the case for Natsuo Fujii, who has become enamoured with his school’s ever-jovial teacher Hina. Natsuo, daunted by this unattainable desire, entertains his friends by attending a mixer. There he meets Rui, a girl who shares his lack of excitement. Rui invites Natsuo to her house and invites him to have sex with her, hoping that the experience will prevent her friends from treating her like a clueless child. Natsuo reluctantly agrees, his hopeless feelings for Hina still fresh in his mind.

Both unsatisfied with their “first times,” the two decide to part ways as strangers. Natsuo’s father, however, drops a major bombshell: he is getting remarried, and his new wife Tsukiko Tachibana is coming over now to meet Natsuo. As if that weren’t enough of a surprise, her daughters—and thus Natsuo’s new sisters—are Hina and Rui Tachibana, the woman he loves and the girl with whom he shared his first night. Now, Natsuo must confront his feelings for his step-siblings as his eyes are opened to a darker side of love.

43. My Dress-Up Darling

Wakana Gojou, a high school student, spends his days perfecting the art of making hina dolls in the hopes of one day surpassing his grandfather’s level of expertise. While his peers are preoccupied with pop culture, Gojou finds fulfilment in sewing clothes for his dolls. Nonetheless, he goes to great lengths to keep his unusual hobby hidden, believing that if it were revealed, he would be mocked.

Marin Kitagawa, a stunningly beautiful girl whose confidence and poise contrast sharply with Gojou’s meekness, enters the picture. It would defy logic for the friendless Gojou to associate with Kitagawa, who is always surrounded by her peers. However, the unthinkable occurs when Kitagawa discovers Gojou’s sewing prowess and openly confesses to him about her own hobby: cosplay. She decides to enlist his assistance because her sewing skills are pitiful.

As Gojou and Kitagawa collaborate on one cosplay outfit after another, they can’t help but become close—despite the fact that their lives are worlds apart.

44. School Days

Makoto Itou, a freshman in high school, first notices Kotonoha Katsura at the start of his second semester. He is immediately captivated by her beauty, but his shyness prevents him from approaching her, despite the fact that they ride the same train every day. Instead, he secretly takes a photo of her and sets it as his phone’s wallpaper: a charm that, if kept hidden, is said to help you realise your love.

Sekai Saionji, a classmate, notices the picture and, instead of ratting him out, offers to help him set up with Kotonoha, even befriending her just for him. As a result, the trio forms an impromptu friendship.

School Days follows the lives of three teenagers as they navigate the joys and tribulations of adolescence. The story of these three students, alive and brimming with romance and melancholy, will linger in memory long after the dramatic conclusion.

45. Scum’s Wish

Hanabi Yasuraoka and Mugi Awaya appear to be the ideal couple to the outside world. But in reality, they only have one thing in common: they are both in love with people they can’t be with.

Hanabi has had a crush on her childhood friend and neighbour Narumi Kanai for as long as she can remember, so she is overjoyed to learn that he is her new homeroom teacher. Narumi, on the other hand, is quickly noticed by the music teacher, Akane Minagawa, and a relationship develops between them, much to Hanabi’s chagrin.

Akane tutored Mugi in middle school, and she has been in love with her ever since. He meets Hanabi through a chance meeting in the hallway. As they spend more time together, these two lonely souls decide to use each other as a substitute for the one they truly love, sharing physical intimacy with one another to alleviate their loneliness.

46. My Love Story!!

Takeo Gouda, with his muscular build and tall stature, is no ordinary high school freshman. Takeo, despite his intimidating appearance, has a pure heart of gold, and his male peers regard him as a hero for his courage and chivalry.

Unfortunately for Takeo, his physical appearance does not bode well for his romantic prospects. Takeo’s cool, handsome best friend and constant companion Makoto Sunakawa easily and unintentionally steals the hearts of the female students—including every girl Takeo has ever liked—as if his looks weren’t enough to scare the opposite sex away.

When Takeo saves the adorable Rinko Yamato from being molested one day, he instantly falls in love with her. Regrettably, he suspects she is interested in Sunakawa. Despite his growing romantic feelings for Yamato, Takeo decides to play cupid for her, despite his longing for his own love story.

47. Say “I Love You.”

best romance anime

Friends will only let you down—that is the sad truth Mei Tachibana has lived with since her so-called friends wrongfully blamed her for the death of a class pet in grade school. She has avoided people since then in order to avoid being hurt again. Mei’s life, however, begins to change dramatically when a misunderstanding in high school leads her to meet popular student Yamato Kurosawa.

Yamato is intrigued by her and insists on being her friend, despite Mei’s objections. However, when a dangerous situation ends with Yamato kissing Mei to save her from the unwanted attention of a stalker, Mei develops feelings for him.

Following her discovery that their feelings are mutual, they begin dating, and she gains not only a boyfriend, but also friends. Mei, on the other hand, finds it difficult to adjust to this new way of life, especially when it comes to expressing her true feelings for Yamato.

Despite their new relationship’s misunderstandings, each other’s attentions, and the attentions of other girls, Mei and Yamato gradually grow closer and learn the true meaning of those three little words: “I love you.”

48. Snow White with the Red Hair

Shirayuki, despite her name meaning “snow white,” is a cheerful, red-haired girl living in Tanbarun who works diligently as an apothecary at her herbal shop. Her life is turned upside down when she is noticed by Tanbarun’s silly prince, Prince Raji, who then tries to force her to become his concubine. Shirayuki cuts her long red hair and flees into the forest, where she is rescued from Raji by Zen Wistalia, the second prince of a neighbouring country, and his two aides. Shirayuki decides to pursue a career as the court herbalist in Zen’s country, Clarines, in the hopes of repaying her debt to the trio someday.

Shirayuki’s journey to a new life at Clarines’ royal palace, as well as Zen’s quest to become a prince worthy of his title, are both depicted in Akagami no Shirayuki-hime. Shirayuki and Zen gradually learn to support each other as loyal friendships and deadly enemies form as they walk their own paths.

49. Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata

For years, otaku Tomoya Aki has been obsessed with collecting anime and light novels, becoming attached to various series with captivating stories and characters. Now, he wants to have a chance to provide the same experience for others by creating his own game, but Tomoya is unable to do so on his own.

While directing, he successfully recruits childhood friend Eriri Spencer Sawamura to illustrate and literary elitist Utaha Kasumigaoka to write the script. Now that he has a super-group, Tomoya only needs an inspiration to base his project on, and he meets the lovely, docile Megumi Katou, after whom he models his main character.

Tomoya creates a new doujin circle with the hope of touching the hearts of those who play their game. What he doesn’t realise is that in order to elicit these emotions, the creators had to go through similar experiences in their own lives.

50. Tonikaku Kawaii

best romance anime

Nasa Yuzaki is determined to leave his mark on history. He is certain that he has his entire life planned out, having placed first in the national mock exam and aspired to a prestigious high school. But fate is a fickle mistress. Nasa spots a peerless beauty across the street on his way home one snowy evening. Nasa, bewitched, tries to approach her, only to be hit by an oncoming truck.

Fortunately, his life is saved as a result of the girl’s quick action. He’s bleeding by the side of an ambulance, watching as the girl walks away under the moonlight, eerily similar to Princess Kaguya’s departure for the moon. Refusing to let this chance encounter pass him by, he forces his crippled body to pursue her and ask her out. Surprised by his audacity and resolve, the girl agrees to his confession on one condition: they can only be together if he marries her!

More Recommendations:

  • Vampire Knight
  • Nagi no Asu kara
  • Nana
  • Lovely Complex
  • Inari, Konkon, Koi Iroha.


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