L-R: My Love From the Star, Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo

10 Best Romance K-Dramas, Ranked

If there’s anything Korean dramas are good at, it’s romance, so let’s take a look at the 10 best romance K-dramas.

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Ever since the release of Squid Game in 2021, the world has become more and more interested in Korean dramas, often called K-dramas. Though Squid Game was revered for its action-packed dystopian premise, there is another genre winning the hearts of the public: romance. K-dramas have the formula of heart-fluttering and gut-wrenching dramas down to a T and have produced dozens of romance dramas loved by many.

Looking for a good romance K-drama to binge? Here are ten of some of the best ones ever released.

10. What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim?

What's Wrong With Secretary Kim?
(Studio Dragon)

Released in 2018, What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? follows the love story between Lee Young Joon (Park Seo Joon) and Kim Mi So. Kim Mi So has acted as Lee Young Joon’s faithful secretary for nine years, so you can imagine his shock when she announces her plans to retire.

The thought of losing his secretary causes Lee Young Joon to do everything in his power to get her to stay. As the two become closer, they discover that they knew each other during their childhood, after they were both involved in a traumatic event. What event? Well, you’ll have to watch to see!

9. One Spring Night

One Spring Night
(MBC TV)

While several romance dramas deal with young people in love, One Spring Night stands out as one of the male leads is a single dad and the social stress he faces in South Korea.

Lee Jeong In (Han Ji Min) is a librarian who has been in a relationship with her boyfriend, Kwon Gi Seok (Kim Jun Han), for four years, despite being unsure if she still loves him. When she meets Yoo Ji Ho (Jung Hae In), a single dad with a son from a previous relationship, at a pharmacy, the two rediscover what love and relationship mean. As they face different social stigmas and life events, will they be able to follow their hearts?

8. Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo

Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo
(MBC TV)

If you love a good coming-of-age story, then Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo is for you! The drama follows Kim Bok Joo, a university student at an athletic college campus pursuing her dream of weightlifting. Dealing with her training and the ridicule she faces for not being traditionally feminine, Kim Bok Joo starts crushing on Jung Jae Yi (Lee Jae Yoon), the older brother of her frenemy, Jung Joon Hyung (Nam Joo Hyuk).

At first, Jung Joon Hyung takes joy in teasing Kim Bok Joo, which causes their friendship to deepen. However, he soon finds himself falling in love with her. What will Kim Bok Joo do next?

7. Fight for My Way

Fight For My Way
(KBS2)

This is Park Seo Joon’s second drama on this list, but it’s so good it has to be mentioned! Fight for My Way tells the story of four underdogs who are struggling day to day but continue to pursue their dreams in careers they are under-qualified for.

The main couple between the four is Ko Dong Man (Park Seo Joon) and Choi Ae Ra (Kim Ji Won). The two are long-time best friends who often quarrel and bicker. Despite that, they find themselves falling in love with each other, despite their clashing personalities.

6. Healer

Healer
(KBS2)

Looking for some action with your romance? Then check out Thriller, which aired between 2014 and 2015.

The drama aims to uncover the truth of an incident from 1992, as well as a string of murders happening in the present day. Three individuals, a skilled fighter named “Healer” (Ji Chang Wook), a reporter from an untrusted tabloid site named Chae Young Shin (Park Min Young), and a famous journalist from a major broadcast station named Kim Moon Ho (Yoo Ji Tae), come together. As they continue their investigations, these three grow into real reporters, who aim to unveil the whole truth.

5. Coffee Prince

Coffee Prince
(Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation)

For longtime K-drama fans, Coffee Prince is considered a classic. At the time of its release in 2007, it was considered progressive, due to its homoerotic elements.

Go Eun Chan (Yoon Eun Hye) with her short hair, baggy clothes, and lanky figure, is often mistaken for a boy. She uses this to her advantage to earn jobs, as she has been the breadwinner of her family since she was 16 years old. She is hired by young mogul Choi Han Gyeol (Gong Yoo) to act as his gay lover to get out of blind dates set up by his family, unaware that she is actually a girl. After he takes over a rundown coffee shop, he names it “Coffee Prince” and hires only handsome men to attract female clients. Go Eun Chan continues pretending to be a man to secure herself a job. Soon, feelings brew between the two, and since Choi Han Gyeol is unaware of Go Eun Chan’s true gender, he starts to question his sexuality.

4. Strong Woman Do Bong Soon

Strong Woman Do Bong Soon
(JTBC)

Before watching its 2023 spinoff, Strong Girl Nam Soon, you should watch the OG 2017 release, Strong Woman Do Bong Soon!

Do Bong Soon (Park Bo Young) comes from a family where all the women are born with superhuman strength; of course, that means she has it, too! However, if they use their powers for selfish reasons, they lose their abilities. With that, Do Bong Soon does her best to appear delicate and elegant—well, for that reason and also to impress her crush, In Guk Doo (Ji Soo). After securing herself a job as a bodyguard for wealthy CEO and heir Ahn Min Hyun (Park Hyun Sik), the two become close friends who train and help each other. As kidnapping cases become rampant in their neighborhood, the two become closer than ever, and soon their relationship develops into something more.

3. Our Beloved Summer

Our Beloved Summer
(Studio N)

You want a show that depicts what love feels like? Then you have to watch Our Beloved Summer, a coming-of-age drama that focuses on memories and how love is experienced through small, often unrecognized acts of service.

Choi Ung (Choi Woo Sik) and Kook Yeon Soo (Kim Da Mi) are former high school sweethearts who, after their break-up, swear never to cross paths again. However, as fate would have it, their old high school documentary would go viral, forcing the two to meet once more. As they face the cameras together, the two uncover hidden and repressed emotions. Will they be able to make it work again?

2. Guardian: The Lonely and Great God

Guardian: The Lonely and Great God
(tvN)

Guardian: The Lonely and Great God, also known as simply Goblin, is considered one of the most impactful K-dramas in South Korea. It became a phenomenon in the country and scored several awards. As the story is based on Korean mythology, it is also a great way to learn about the culture.

After being framed as a traitor and killed by the king, Kim Shin (Gong Yoo) becomes an immortal goblin. Already on this earth for 939 years, he wants to find his bride, who can remove the sword piercing from his chest and end his immortality. Ji Eun Tak (Kim Go Eun) is a bubbly high school student. However, behind her bubbly exterior, she holds a tragic past and the ability to see ghosts. After accidentally summoning the Goblin, their fates intertwine. Are they more connected than they thought?

1. My Love From the Stars

My Love From the Star Poster.
(SBS TV)

Considered one of the OG K-dramas, My Love From the Star is the perfect mix of romance, comedy, and fantasy! The drama is considered so monumental that, during its release in 2013, it sparked several make-up, fashion, and food trends. This drama is considered one of the things that sparked the Hallyu Wave in other countries.

The drama follows Do Min Joon (Kim Soo Hyun), an alien who landed in South Korea 400 years ago, during the Joseon dynasty. Due to certain circumstances, he has been stranded on Earth for four centuries. Boasting perfect visuals and enhanced physical abilities, he never ages and is forced to forge a new identity every ten years. One day, he meets Cheon Song Yi (Jun Ji Hyun), a famous Korean actress who is often ridiculed due to her arrogant attitude. As they fall in love, will Do Min Joon be able to return to his home planet?

(featured image: SBS, MBC TV)


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Alexandria Lopez
Alexandria "Alexa" Lopez (She/Her) is a Freelance Writer for TheMarySue.Com. She graduated with a degree in Integrated Marketing and Communications from the University of Asia and the Pacific and has been writing online since 2017. Currently residing in Metro Manila, Alexa has been a fan of K-pop since she was a child, and this is a phase she will likely never outgrow. Besides that, Alexa loves video games, anime, and keeping up her Duolingo streak.