What Kdramas Should You Watch? Discover the Must See Korean Dramas

I Hear Your Voice Korean Drama

Whether you are new to Kdramas or even if you have seen your fair share, it can be a bit overwhelming trying to sift through the seemingly endless amount of dramas to choose from.  You like what you have seen so far, but you’re not sure how to choose your next drama.  The question is, “What Kdramas should I watch?”  That’s where this guide comes in!

This is meant to be a beginner’s guide to Kdramas for what to watch, but even if you are a more seasoned viewer, make sure you may haven’t missed out on any of these classics.  I have chosen Kdramas that have maintained a high level of popularity with fans over the years, as well as Kdramas that I love.  Most of these can be watched on Viki, Kocowa, or OnDemandKorea.

With so many amazing Kdramas to choose from, I may have missed a drama you think should be on the list.  Feel free to comment with your favorites.

I have included a sampling of Kdramas from the major categories.  So if you already know you like a drama in one category, you may like another one too.

I always recommend trying out a few dramas from each category so that you can really get an idea of what you like.  If you would like other recommendations, feel free to ask in the comments below or use the ‘Contact’ tab at the top of the page.

I am in the process of reviewing these dramas.  If a drama has a completed review, you will be able to click on the drama’s name to see the full review.

Romantic Comedy

Kill Me Heal Me Korean Drama - Ji SungKill Me, Heal Me

A man struggling with Multiple Personality Disorder brings us smiles and breaks our hearts on his journey to recovery with the help of a special woman.

My Girlfriend is a Gumiho Korean DramaMy Girlfriend is a Gumiho

Comedy and cute abounds when a Gumiho (magical creature) falls in love with an immature human.

My Love from Another Star Korean Drama - Jeon Ji Hyeon and Kim Soo HyunMy Love from Another Star

A fantasy romance about a 400 year old alien who falls in love with an actress.

You're Beautiful Korean Drama - Jang Geun Suk and Park Shin HyeYou’re Beautiful

Hi-jinks ensue when a girl cross dresses as a boy to be in a kpop band.

Pinocchio Korean Drama - Lee Jong Suk and Park Shin HyePinocchio

A man whose life was devastated by corrupt reporters seeks to reveal their true motives by becoming one himself.

Rooftop PrinceRooftop Prince

A time travel romance about a prince from the past who meets the love of his life in present day Seoul.

I Hear Your Voice Korean DramaI Hear Your Voice

A man who can read other people’s thoughts struggles to protect the woman he loves when someone from their past threatens them.

Shopping King Louie Korean Drama - Seo In Guk and Nam Ji HyunShopping King Louie

A rich man wakes up in Seoul homeless with amnesia where he meets a sweet country girl who takes him in, and the two work together to discover who he is while having to survive the city.

Secret Garden Korean Drama - Hyun Bin and Ha Ji WonSecret Garden

A body swapping fantasy about a rich man who falls for a stunt woman.

Fated to Love You Korean Drama - Jang Hyuk and Jang Na RaFated to Love You

An accidental one night stand leads to a pregnancy and an amazing love story.

Coffee Prince Korean Drama - Gong Yoo and Yoon Eun HyeCoffee Prince

A girl cross dresses as a boy to get a job at a coffee shop and gets into a complicated relationship when her boss develops feelings for her.


Boys Over Flowers Korean Drama - Lee Min Ho, Kim Hyun Joong, Kim Bum, Kim JoonBoys Over Flowers

The classic gateway drama.  Four rich, handsome guys rule the school, but their world is turned upside down by a spunky transfer student who steals their hearts.

Dream High Korean DramaDream High

Teens pursue their dreams and face life’s challenges at this musical high school.

Playful Kiss Korean DramaPlayful Kiss

After her house is a destroyed, a teen girl and her dad move in with her crush, the most popular boy at her school.

Heirs Korean Drama - Lee Min Ho and Park Shin HyeHeirs

The complicated love lives of rich teenagers and an ordinary girl who gets involved with them.

Reply 1997 Korean Drama - Seo In Guk, Jung Eun Ji, Hoya, Shin So Yool, Eun Ji Won, and Lee Shi EonReply 1997

Six friends deal with love and life as they grow up together.


City Hunter Korean Drama - Lee Min Ho and Park Min Young 9City Hunter

A man seeks revenge on the corrupt politicians responsible for his father’s death by taking matters into his own hands.

Healer Korean DramaHealer

A night courier hired to investigate a woman finds that he may be involved in the mystery he is trying to uncover.

Bridal Mask Korean Drama - Joo WonBridal Mask (Gaksital)

An epic story of a masked man fighting to free Koreans during the Japanese occupation in the 1930’s.

Two Weeks - Lee Joon GiTwo Weeks

A man framed for murder must survive for two weeks in order to save his daughter with leukemia.

Signal - Lee Je Hoon, Kim Hye Soo, Jo Jin Woong 3Signal

Modern day detectives communicate with a detective in the past using an old two way radio to solve crimes, but they soon learn that messing with time is a dangerous thing.


I Miss You Korean Drama - Park Yoo Chun and Yoon Eun HyeI Miss You

A man searches for his first love who tragically disappeared when they were teenagers.

Nice Guy Korean Drama - Song Joong KiNice Guy (Innocent Man)

A man seeks revenge on the woman he loved after spending years in jail for taking the blame for a crime she committed.

Descendants of the Sun Korean Drama - Song Joong Ki and Song Hye KyoDescendants of the Sun

A special forces captain and a doctor fall in love while providing aid in a country dealing with a natural disaster and civil strife.

Goblin: The Lonely and Great God Korean Drama - Gong Yoo, Kim Go Eun, Lee Dong Wook, Yoo In NaGoblin: The Lonely and Great God

A goblin seeks to end his cursed immortal life and needs a human bride to do so, but when he finally finds his bride, he realizes he wants to live and be with her.

49 Days Korean Drama - Lee Yo Won and Nam Gyu Ri49 Days

A woman who dies before her time is given the chance to live if she collects the tears of three people who genuinely loved her.

King of Baking Korean Drama - Yoon Shi YoonKing of Baking

A young man must overcome hardships to become a baker and inherit the company that is rightfully his.

Shining Inheritance Korean Drama - Lee Seung Gi and Han Hyo JooShining Inheritance (Brilliant Legacy)

A woman who has lost her family is suddenly told she will inherit a wealthy woman’s fortune and is invited to live with her family.

Sageuk (Historical)

Gu Family Book Korean Drama - Lee Seung Gi and SuzyGu Family Book

A half human/half gumiho struggles to become human and protect those he loves.

Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Goryeo Korean Drama - Lee Joon Gi and IUMoon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Goryeo

A woman travels back in time to the Goryeo era where she gets romantically involved with several princes and finds herself in the middle of their battle for the throne.

Iljimae Korean DramaIljimae

A masked man robs from the rich and gives to the poor while trying to uncover the truth behind his father’s murder.

Moon That Embraces the Sun Korean Drama - Kim Soo HyunThe Moon That Embraces the Sun

A love story between a prince and a shaman who share a complicated fate.

Princess' Man Korean Drama - Park Shi Hoo and Moon Chae WonPrincess’ Man

A love story between a man and a woman whose families seek to destroy each other.

Tree with Deep Roots Korean Drama - Jang HyukTree with Deep Roots

A king hires a man to find out who is murdering his top scholars, but the man also has a vendetta against the king.

Empress Ki - Ha Ji Won 15Empress Ki

A woman is caught between the King of Goryeo and the Emperor of Yuan as she rises from a lowly concubine to become the mighty Empress Ki.

Looking for something newer to watch?  Check out these recommendations below:

Currently/Recently Aired (Updated regularly)

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (romance melodrama)

Flower of Evil (romance crime melodrama)

Vincenzo (crime melodrama)

Tale of the Nine-Tailed (fantasy romance)

True Beauty (romantic comedy)

Alchemy of Souls (historical)


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About Kay

Greetings! I’m Kay, creator and author of Kdrama Kisses. Kdrama Kisses is dedicated to bringing you the latest in kdrama casting news, drama trailers, reviews, and more. Happy drama watching to everyone!
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23 Responses to What Kdramas Should You Watch? Discover the Must See Korean Dramas

  1. joybran2015 says:

    I love your list. I’ve seen all episodes of all of them except “A Tree with Deep Roots,” which is on my list to finish watching soon. I like to wait until after a drama has aired and then marathon it, but I’m making an exception right now for “Scholar Who Walks the Night” and “Yong Pal.” I just finished “Mask” and I’m currently marathoning “My Beautiful Bride.” I have “School 2015” and “Oh My Ghostess” on my “plan to watch” list.

    One of my very favorite dramas is “Queen In Hyun’s Man,” which is a must see for anyone who likes time travel or romance. My very favorite actor is Lee Joon Gi. His “Time Between Dog and Wolf” is a classic action drama and “Arang and the Magistrate” is a classic fusion sageuk. Even “My Girl,” which was his first drama as second lead, is a classic. The OTP is Lee Dong Wook and Lee Da Hae, who give fine performances, but many people cite “My Girl” as a Second Lead Syndrome example.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      I think we may just be kindred spirits, lol. We seem to be very similar! Lee Joon Gi is my favorite actor, and it was tempting to put all of his dramas on the list!

      I also prefer to marathon dramas. I usually wait until about two weeks before a drama finishes airing and then start it, that way I’m at least somewhat involved with the drama community, but I don’t have to wait week to week (although I do keep up with how shows are doing and fan reaction week to week). I’m going to start Scholar next week. It’s been a grueling wait! I think the wait for Yong Pal will be pretty bad too.

      I might have to get some drama recommendations from you after this next drama cycle. It’s great to chat with another Lee Joon Gi fan who also has very similar tastes 🙂


      • joybran2015 says:

        It’s nice to meet a kindred spirit! I just discovered kdramas three years ago, but I’ve become an addict.

        Another sageuk you would probably enjoy if you haven’t seen it yet is “Warrior Baek Dong Soo” with Ji Chang Wook and Yoo Seung Ho.

        A melodrama that I loved somewhat to my surprise was “The Devil” with Uhm Tae Woong and Joo Ji Hoon. That is one I haven’t seen on anyone else’s favorites list, but I liked Joo Ji Hoon in it much more than in “Goong.”


  2. I’ve seen three! Hahaha still a lot to go!
    A lot of these are already on my list, but there’s a few that aren’t, so I might check them out! Thanks for the guide 🙂


    • Kay says:

      Well, you have a lot of good times ahead then! Lol. I think most of these are pretty solid. A few are a bit dated and of course it really depends what genres/ types of shows you like, but it gives a good idea of some of the different types of shows out there. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m pretty easy going in terms of genre… I’ve seen City Hunter, Boys Over Flowers and Innocent Man, so that you gives you a bit of an idea haha.


      • Kay says:

        If you liked City Hunter, the other 3 in the action genre are excellent.

        All of the rom coms are pretty good, but my favs are My Girlfriend is a Gumiho & Kill Me, Heal Me.

        Iljimae is pretty fun for the historical genre, but it is a bit older with a sort of comic feel and you have to go with the fact that Iljimae is able to do some amazing, yet a bit unrealistic things, lol. It’s a lot of fun though.

        I’ll have to get some anime recs from you because that’s where I’m a total newbie as I have only seen a few. Like kdramas, it can be hard to know where to start 🙂


        • bibi says:

          also try ‘the king 2 hearts.’ its amazing. all the dramas in your list kay are awesome!i’ve watched all of them and so far you are on point!’reply 1997′ was fantastic,and their kiss was one of the best korean drama kisses i think!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Kay says:

            Thank you bibi! And yes, King 2 Hearts is another fantastic drama. I should probably update the list and include Reply 1997 in the teen section too. There are so many other amazing dramas I was tempted to include on the list, but I didn’t want to get to carried away 🙂


  3. AidaZen says:

    An exceptional list! You truly captured the essence of Kdrama both past and present. I’m at the 50% mark with this list, but I’ve definitely heard of them all! This tells me that though these dramas are indeed popular, they can’t ALL appeal to everyone. Still, I will enjoy as many as I can!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      Thank you! That’s what I was going for. And I totally agree on the appeal. I included several on the list that were just average in terms of enjoyment for me, but they tend to be very popular among most drama fans. Someday I’ll just do my favorite drama list and it will include some that weren’t on this list. And I even have a couple on the list I still need to enjoy too! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • joybran2015 says:

        I also agree about the appeal. I enjoyed almost all of the dramas on this list, but some more than others. The only one I didn’t enjoy and felt was a waste of time was The Heirs, but I know it was very popular with a lot of people, maybe just because of that fabulous cast.

        The teen genre is my least favorite, but I very much enjoyed Boys Over Flowers, even though the story was a mess.


  4. This is such a fantastic list. I’ve seen most of these (all of them but Kill Me, Heal Me and ones from your melodrama category) and these are great recommendations. Have you seen Heartstrings? That’s a pretty good school themed one (set in college though, I think). And Dong Yi is another great historical one. Rooftop Prince and Sungkyungkwan Scandal are fun quasi historical dramas too. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      We seem to have similar tastes 🙂 I absolutely love Rooftop Prince and really liked Sungkyungkwan Scandal too. I actually haven’t seen Heartstrings yet! I’ve had a couple people recommend it, and I definitely plan to check it out because it looks so cute. Dong Yi is also on my list. I’m right in the middle of the historical Empress Ki right now and loving it.

      Kill Me Heal Me is one of my all time favorite dramas and definitely the best drama of the year for me. I thought it was a nice mix of melodrama and comedy. I just loved everything about it 🙂

      Thank you for the recommendations!

      Liked by 1 person

      • joybran2015 says:

        Dong Yi has been on my list for a long time, but I hesitated to start the 60 episodes when there are so many 16- and 20-episode dramas I want to see. However, I started it a couple of days ago and I’m on episode 10 and loving it. Yesterday I discovered that my Vietnamese manicurist is a big kdrama fan and Dong Yi was the first favorite she mentioned.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Kay says:

          That’s exactly why I have waited so long to start Empress Ki! lol Everyone kept telling me how awesome it is, but I was always thinking, “But I could watch 3 dramas in that amount of time!” I guess we were in a similar mood, because I finally took the challenge and started Empress Ki a week and a half ago. I’m on episode 20 and absolutely love it! The pacing has been great, and I haven’t been bored once. I’m so glad I finally jumped in.

          It looks like things are going well for you too, and I hope you continue to love Dong Yi. I want to see that too, and now I definitely want to check out a few more of the longer sageuks.

          And how fun to meet someone who loves kdramas! I have yet to meet someone in real life who likes them (other than my family). I’d be pretty excited to discover another fan 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

      • Reading your review of Kill Me Heal Me convinced me it’d be something I’d like, I think. So I’ll definitely be giving it a go now that I’m on winter break. And oh my gosh, you must watch Dong Yi! Like all the historical dramas, it’s pretty long but the plot is very intriguing and I really loved it. Heartstrings is also really enjoyable; I really liked the soundtrack.

        Ahh, I enjoyed Empress Ki! I love Ha Ji Won and it was interesting to see her in a period drama. I also liked how strong and ambitious her character was. And the love triangle was quite bearable and made an awesome plot line. I hope you continue to enjoy the drama. 🙂


        • Kay says:

          Now that I’m having success with a longer sageuk, I am definitely encouraged to try more. And Dong Yi is very highly praised. I really like the love triangle in Empress Ki. I enjoy both Ji Chang Wook and Joo Jin Mo. They’re so opposite, but each have their strengths. Of course, I’ve gotten a lot of laughs from the Emperor.

          I’m glad you’re going to try Kill Me, Heal Me. Ji Sung is absolutely phenomenal, and his chemistry with Hwang Jung Eum was fantastic. I really hope you like it 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

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