15 Excellent Korean Dramas to Binge Watch and Learn Korean

korean dramas

If you’re looking for a fun way to learn Korean, then this article may just be for you. Like most Korean language learners, you have probably already heard of, or watched Korean dramas before. Watching K-drama is surely a great way to dip your toes into the Korean language and culture while enjoying something fun. 

In this article, we will recommend 15 great K-Dramas to binge watch this summer! In the end, we’ll also share some tips to show you how to learn Korean with this fun form of entertainment.

Now get ready and let’s start!

15 Korean Dramas to Binge-Watch in Summer 2023

Last but not least, here is a list of must-watch K-dramas in summer 2023. Some of them are just released this summer and some are the best of all time. You can also comment below and let us know your favorite k-dramas!

1. The Glory Season 2 (2023)

Korean drama 2023: The Glory 2

The Glory Part 2 is the highly anticipated second season of the revenge thriller series on Netflix. It continues the story of Moon Dong-eun, played by Song Hye-kyo, as she enacts an intricate plan to get retribution on her childhood bullies.

2. Our Blues (2022)

our blues poster

This drama takes place on Jeju Island and depicts the ups and downs that the villagers face in their daily lives. Well-known talents like Lee Byun Hun, Shin Min Ah and Kim Woo Bin star in this drama, so it’s definitely worth checking out. If you want to know what life outside Seoul is like and are curious about learning different accents and dialects, this drama is for you. 

Where to watch it: Netflix 

trailer: https://youtu.be/HOkMU1ULnUY

3. Bloodhounds (2023)

Bloodhounds series

Bloodhounds, Netflix’s new action-crime Korean original, sees two young boxers take on a corrupt loan shark in a plot reminiscent of the platform’s recent hits like D.P. and Squid Game. Propelled by the thunderous direction of Jason Kim, the series delivers an adrenaline-fueled midseason run. 

Where to watch it: Netflix 

4. One Day Off (2023)

One Day Off

One Day Off gives a behind-the-scenes look at the personal lives of idol stars during their rare days off from hectic schedules. Viewers will get a fictionalized peek at the poignant struggles these young entertainers face, coming soon on iQIYI.

5. Dr. Romantic 3 (2023)

Dr. Romantic 3

Dr. Romantic 3 sees the return of Han Suk-kyu as the maverick Dr. Kim and his ragtag team at the new Doldam Trauma Center. Though the characters bring their own stories, the life-saving medical crises Dr. Kim and his loyal team work together to resolve remain the gripping heart of this SBS medical drama filled with high-stakes emergency room action.

6. Crash Course in Romance (2023)

Crash Course in Romance

Crash Course in Romance is a heartwarming romantic comedy focused on education starring veteran actress Jeon Do-yeon as a former athlete supporting her niece who crosses paths with a star instructor played by Jung Kyung-ho.

While hitting the familiar beats of initially bickering leads falling for each other, what elevates this Netflix K-drama is its talented cast and thoughtful exploration of relevant social themes around Korea’s highly competitive education system. With its mix of humor, romance, and social commentary, Crash Course in Romance promises to be an impactful drama.

where to watch: Netflix

7. Queen Maker (2023)

Queen Maker follows a political strategist’s ambitious rise in Korea’s cutthroat political arena. With a star-studded cast, this new tvN series offers an intriguing look at political power plays.

Where to watch: Netflix

8. Strange Lawyer Woo Young Woo (2022)

This tells the story of a lawyer with Asperger’s syndrome. Thanks to her high IQ and spectacular memory, she graduated at the top of her class from law school. The only thing that gets in the way of her success are social interactions.

Release date: June 29

Where to watch it: Netflix 

9. Big Mouth (2022)

Park Chang Ho is a lawyer with a win percentage of only 10 percent. He can’t afford the rent for his office or pay a salary to his father-in-law, who works with him.

Strange things suddenly start to happen when he decides to take on a murder case.

Release date: July 29, 2022

Where to watch it: MBC (more information on other networks will be released later)

trailer: https://youtu.be/Nn43g7pae2g

10. Shooting Stars (2022)

Shooting Stars poster

This tells the story of a woman who leads the PR team for an entertainment agency. One of the biggest clients is the top star Gong Tae Sung, whom the PR lead knows from high school and college, where he became her enemy. Despite their bickering, they soon fall for each other.

Where to watch it: WeTV, Viki Rakuten 

11. Descendants of The Sun (2016)

“Descendants of the Sun” is a blockbuster romance that shows the meaning of life through the story of a young soldier and a doctor who yearn for love and success in a strange and extremely harsh environment. Their tale unfolds against the backdrop of the beautiful southern landscape.

First released in 2016, Descendants of The Sun had the highest rating of 38.8% nationwide in Korea and was a hit throughout Asia. The drama is also notable for leading to a romance between actors Song Joong-ki and Song Hye Kyo.

Where to watch it: Netflix, Viki Rakuten

12. The Heirs (2013)

The Heirs poster

The Heirs is a South Korean youth comedy-drama that was broadcast on SBS starting on October 9, 2013. It co-stars famous Korean actors such as Lee Min Ho and Park Shin Hye.

The drama is about a sweet and heartwarming but conflict-filled romance between a Korean high society heir and an extremely ordinary and realistic lower-class girl. In May 2014, the drama won the second DramaFever Awards for Best Drama Series in the United States. In addition to Asia, the show has also been a hit in the United States. 

Where to watch it: Netflix, Viki Rakuten


13. IRIS (2009)

IRIS is a story about the special agents of the Korean National Security Agency in a rapidly changing world, specifically about breathtaking fights, betrayals, and romances between spies. The premiere of the show recorded a high rating of 39.9% in Korea.

Where to watch it: Netflix 

14. Coffee Prince (2007)

Coffee Prince is a Korean TV series that premiered on July 2, 2007, starring Yoon Eun Hye, Kong Yoo and other popular actors in Korea. It became the top-rated drama at the time. The plot is set in a coffee shop and tells the story of four very different men and women who meet, get to know each other and fall in love.

Where to watch it: Netflix , Viki Rakuten

trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liJEk4gkKQ4

15. Secret Garden (2010)

Secret Garden poster

Secret Garden is a weekend special drama produced by SBS in 2010. It stars Hyun Bin, Ha Ji Won, Yoon Sang Hyun, and Kim Sa Rang.

The drama is about a couple who first met on set due to a misunderstanding and then accidentally swapped souls and started a beautiful love story. The highest rating since its original broadcast was 31.4%.

Where to watch it: Netflix 

trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ic05V2NvIoQ&list=PLShqORWiDquPUuwMk_c1m_IZSvCuKKaFs

Can You Learn Korean from K-Drama?

You may be thinking, how can Korean dramas help me to actually learn something? Well, there’s a lot to learn from them, culture, for example. Some of the things people have said that they had the most difficulty with when learning another language and visiting another country was the cultural differences. These dramas can give you better insight into the culture, traditions, and habits of this country, so the culture shock won’t be as intense for you.

Another thing you will learn from K-drama is pronunciation. It’s a really easy way to learn pronunciation from native speakers. Of course, conversations are a two-way street thing, so not only do you need to be able to convey your thoughts, but you also need to understand what the other person is talking about. Watching dramas is a great way to practice your listening skills

Just like in every other country, not everyone in South Korea has the same accent and there are different dialects depending on the region you’re in. You can get familiar with this by watching dramas. The language that’s used in textbooks often differs from the Korean language used in real life. K-dramas can help you to understand what language should be used in different situations.

k-drama posters

How to Learn Korean when Watching K-drama

Enable Websites’ Learning Mode

There are various platforms you can use to watch Kdrama. You may already be familiar with some of them, such as Viki Rakuten, YouTube, Netflix, Dailymotion, iQIYI, Hulu, and AsianCrush… But did you know that you can actually enable a learning function on some of these websites? 

Viki Rakuten is one such website. You can enable the Learn mode (only available on web browser and IOS app) by clicking on the icon for subtitles and switching on Learn mode. The subtitles of the original language and your language will appear on the screen side-by-side. You can move to the previous and next segments by using arrows, and you can also replay them. If you want to know a bit more about a certain word, you just click on it to get the definition and pronunciation in your language.

Choose the Right K-Dramas

There are various kinds of drama, which can make it difficult to choose. Remember, always choose those that interest you. That way you’ll like watching them, and that’s what will keep you hooked on your language learning in the long run. 

There are some websites that can make the choice easier. For example, you can search reviews on YouTube, or you can go to MyDramaList and pick a drama by selecting a certain genre or choosing by actors.

Watch dramas with both English and Korean subtitles if you can. It helps you to better understand what the characters are saying in Korean. However, this is not a must as long as you enjoy the dramas! 🙂

Tips to Learn Korean

Korean dramas can be very interesting to watch, but remember that you are also watching them to learn Korean. Sometimes you can be so into the story that you forget to listen to what’s being said. In order to avoid this, you can:

  •  Use Korean subtitles and try to read what’s written, then play the audio to check if it’s correct (if you already have some knowledge of the Korean alphabet).
  • Repeat what’s being said to practice your pronunciation. 
  • Replay certain parts to get a good grasp of what’s being said. 

Are there any other Korean dramas you’d like to recommend? Share with us in the comments!

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1 year ago

I really recommend The Uncanny Counter on Netflix! Very good acting, supernatural twists, mystery, and action! There is one season currently with a second planned.

1 year ago

Something I personally do is specifically start with shorter web dramas, that way translating lines is easier and the incorporation of slang is used more often. Because they normally follow a shorter format it’s easier for me to deep dive into every scene/line if I don’t understand something, and learn new things.

1 year ago
Reply to  Anonymous

That’s useful information. Thank you! Also maybe start with animation designed for children as the lines are easier to understand.

8 days ago

Seen all of these and they’re great!