Must-Watch Romance Anime For 2021

Love comes in all forms, and so do people’s tastes in romantic TV shows and movies. Some people like true romances, some like romcoms, and others like to cry a whole lot. Luckily, you can find all of these in anime–sometimes all in one show. (We’re looking at you, My Love Story.)

From comedies to tearjerkers, there’s a romantic anime out there for almost everyone. We’ve included a mix of older and newer romance anime and a couple of films as well, so you’re sure to find something to suit your tastes. And with Valentine’s Day coming up, what better way to celebrate the holiday of love? Whether you’re single or spending Valentine’s Day with a partner this year, these romance anime would be a great way to spend the evening.

Be sure to check out the video version of this gallery to see these anime in action! And for more on anime, be sure to check out our guides to the best anime available on Netflix and the best anime streaming services. If you’re looking for Valentine’s Day recommendations, check out the best Valentine’s Day gifts, cozy Valentine’s Day movies, and the best games for couples to play together.

Fruits Basket (2019)

Based on one of the most beloved shojo manga of all time, Fruits Basket (2019) is the faithful anime adaptation fans have been waiting literally 20 years for. The reboot anime series is adapting the entirety of Natsuki Takaya’s original work, so for the first time, Fruits Basket fans will see the story animated from beginning to end.

The story follows a high-schooler named Tohru Honda, who comes to live with the mysterious Sohma family. It turns out the Sohmas are hiding a huge secret: They’re cursed with the spirits of the Zodiac, with each member transforming into their respective animal when hugged by a member of the opposite sex. Naturally, this leads to some humorous situations, and the show has no shortage of comedy and drama. But one of the best parts about Fruits Basket’s reboot anime is that it delves into its romances. We finally get to see Tohru fall in love, and the reboot teases the budding relationship between her and (spoiler!) with some particularly delightful scenes. In fact, nearly every character in the show has some kind of romantic dilemma going on. With Season 3 (the final season) airing this spring, there’s truly no better time to get caught up on Fruits Basket

Your Name

When it comes to romantic anime films, it’s hard to discuss the genre without mentioning Your Name, which became an international hit back in 2016 and 2017. It tells the story of a boy and a girl from completely different backgrounds: Mitsuha, a high-school girl from the rural town of Itomori, and Taki, a student living in bustling Tokyo. Despite being complete strangers, the two inexplicably begin to switch bodies one day, and as a result, their lives become intricately connected in more ways than one. While the first half of the film has some truly hilarious moments as they get used to being in a body of the opposite sex, the latter half is an emotional rollercoaster that takes some truly surprising turns

My Love Story!!

A lot of couples in romance anime take an entire season to get together, but My Love Story’s Takeo and Yamato are not a normal couple. Takeo, the unusual main protagonist, looks like a yakuza boss–so not a teenage girl’s typical dream guy–but Yamato falls for him immediately. Of course, all of her friends think she’s out of her mind, so the dynamic between the couple and their friends becomes a crucial part of their shared story.

Most importantly, My Love Story explores Takeo and Yamato’s relationship as it grows and develops–this isn’t another will-they, won’t-they romance. It’s consistently delightful and hits all the favorite tropes, too, without overdoing them–that means beach, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day episodes! It also has one of the cutest theme songs in recent years, great for watching with that special someone

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