TOP 17 Most Popular K-Dramas Among International Fans

What was the first drama you got hooked on?

K-drama is loved and watched all over the world. We’ve all binge watched a K-drama or two, or three… or four. One does not simply watch one episode of a series, you binge watch them all.


1. Jewel in the Palace (2003)

Based on the true story of Jang Geum, the first female royal physician of the Joseon Dynasty, Jewel in the Palace gained popularity because of its portrayal of traditional Korean culture, including Korean royal court cuisine and traditional medicine.

Starring Lee Young Ae, Jin Jin Ee, and Hong Ri Na, Jewel in the Palace was one of the first K-Dramas to help spark the Korean wave!


2. Full House (2004)

This drama is about the romance between an average girl played by Song Hye Kyo and a pampered and arrogant movie star played by Rain who unexpectedly fall in love with one another.

This popular drama has been remade by 6 other countries: The Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Turkey, and China!


3. Coffee Prince (2007)

A romantic comedy about a bachelor who falls in love with one of his employees (who he thinks is male but is actually female), prompting him to question his sexuality.

Yoon Eun Hye revealed that Gong Yoo was her ideal type out of all the male co-stars she has filmed with.


4. Boys Over Flowers (2009)

Starring Lee Min Ho, Ku Hye Sun, Kim Hyun Joong, Kim Bum, and Kim So Eun, Boys Over Flowers is based on the Japanese shojo manga series, Hana Yori Dango. The series is about an average girl who gets tangled up in the lives of an arrogant rich boy and his friends.

Boys Over Flowers is credited with launching the career of Lee Min Ho, who had previously appeared in a small number of low-budget high school dramas.


5. The Secret Garden (2010)

The Secret Garden is a romantic comedy about a wealthy man who swaps souls with a poor stunt woman forcing both of them to learn  about how different their worlds are. 

Ha Ji Won and Hyun Bin received rave reviews for perfectly capturing each others’ personality and role when they switched souls.


6. The Moon Embracing the Sun (2012)

The Moon Embracing the Sun is a historical drama telling the love story between King Lee Hwon portrayed by Kim Soo Hyun and a female shaman named Wol played by Han Ga In.

Actor Kim Soo Hyun also sang the song “You are the One” for the drama series showing off his singing talent!


7. Heirs (2013)

Heirs depicts the friendships, rivalries, and love lives of young, rich heirs led by Kim Tan (played by Lee Min Ho) and a girl named Cha Eun Sang (played by Park Shin Hye). Unlike the others, Eun Sang is considered ordinary and comes from a poor background. Things become complicated when Kim Tan becomes interested in her.

Lee Min Ho is back with an all-star crew including Kim Woo Bin, Kim Ji Won, Kang Ha Neul, Krystal, and Park Hyung Sik! 


8. My Love from the Star (2014)

Things get interesting when Do Min Joon, an alien portrayed by Kim Soo Hyun, lands on Earth and falls in love with beautiful but quirky actress Cheon Song Yi, played by Jun Ji Hyun.

This was Jun Ji Hyun’s small screen comeback to television after taking a 14-year break!


9. Pinnochio (2015)

Pinnochio was a romantic drama starring Park Shin Hye and Lee Jong Suk about a young boy whose life and family has been destroyed by the media.

Pinocchio sold to Youku Tudou in China for $280,000 per episode making it the highest paid per episode for a Korean drama!


10. Healer (2015)

Healer is about a star broadcast reporter who discovers the truth of a long forgotten incident, forcing him to struggle between truth and faith.

The onscreen chemistry between leads, Ji Chang Wook and Park Min Young was so touching that they captured the hearts of netizens everywhere!


11. Moonlight Drawn by the Clouds (2016)

Moonlight Drawn by the Clouds is a story and youth romance set during the 19th-century Joseon Dynasty starring Park Bo Gum and Kim Yoo Jung. Crown Prince Lee begins developing feelings for his eunuch, Hong Ra In, and begins wondering what he should do!

The press referred to the drama’s influence as “Moonlight Syndrome” as it topped topicality, content, and brand reputation charts in and beyond its run!


12. My Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-Joo (2016)

What happens when a spunky female weightlifter (played by Lee Sung Kyung) and free-spirited male swimmer (played by Nam Joo Hyuk) meet on campus, only to find out that their pasts are intertwined?

Shippers rejoiced when the two main leads were confirmed to be dating, but sadly the relationship ended a few months later. They still support each other though!


13. Descendents of the Sun (2016)

This K-drama is a love story between Captain Yoo Shi Jin played by Song Joong Ki and Doctor Kang Mo Yeon played by Song Hye Kyo. Together they face danger in a war-torn country and fall in love with one another.

The drama that brought together the beloved and newlywed #Songsongcouple and shippers were ecstatic everywhere! K-drama brought to life!


14. Goblin: The Great and Lonely God (2017)

Goblin tells the story of Kim Shin, played by Gong Yoo, an immortal goblin who longs to end his life. But only when he finds the Goblin’s Bride, played by Kim Go Eun, will be able to end his immortality and return to dust.

The widely-praised drama was written by Kim Eun Sook, who also wrote the popular series The Secret Garden, The Heirs, and Descendants of the Sun!


15. Strong Woman Do Bong Soon (2017)

A drama about a freakishly strong but sweet girl (played by Park Bo Young) caught between the love for her arrogant, yet gorgeous boss played by Park Hyung Sik, and her handsome but disinterested childhood crush played by Jisoo.

Park Hyung Sik plays the role of a video game company CEO. He also is an avid gamer in real life too!


16. SKY Castle

A story set with the uber-wealthy in Korea and their quests to get their children into the best University possible, with no restraint, SKY Castle melds real-life situations with fantastic acting in one of 2019’s most popular dramas.



Starring 2 high-profile leads in Suzy and Lee Seung Gi, VAGABOND tells the story of a martial artist teacher trying to uncover a massive conspiracy that has spread to the highest levels of Korea, and his quest to live to complete the tale.

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