Top 25 Best Sites to Watch Anime Free
Summary: Running out of anime during the lockdown period of staying at home amidst the outbreak of this global COVID-19 pandemic? Then you should feel lucky being here, as after reading this article, you will have access to some 25 anime sites to watch anime for free. No more worrying about where can I watch anime for free. Move on to explore the surprise.
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Do you still remember the old childhood days sitting in front of the black & white TV and watching Dragon Ball, Hey! Bumbo, Legend of Sanctuary, or Little Memole all the afternoon? If you are one of the diehard fans of anime like me or if you are looking everywhere to find those classic Japanese anime to re-experience your childhood memories, then you are in good luck. Here today in this article, we are going to show you the 25 best anime sites to watch anime for free, so that you can recall your happy childhood, and in the meantime, don’t have to spend a good fortune on renting or buying a copy of a particular series or film of your favorite anime.
Section 1. The Past and Now of Anime
Before we jump to the website list, let’s first recall what an anime is. The word anime — pronounced "ah-knee-may" — is an abbreviation of the word animation. In Japan, the word is used to refer to all types and genres of animations. However, outside of Japan, it has now become the catch-all term for animations from Japan.
For decades, anime was a local product produced by and for Japan, with a distinct look-and-feel to not just the artwork but the storytelling, the themes, and the concepts. However, during the past forty years, it has become an international phenomenon, attracting millions of fans all over the globe and has been translated and dubbed into many other languages. It is even safe to say that a whole generation of viewers in both West and other part of Asia has grown up with these anime and are now still passing on to their own children.
Given all the things anime tend to be lumped together, it's tempting to categorize anime as a standalone genre, which actually isn't, at least no more than animation itself is a genre, but rather a description of how the material is produced. Anime shows, like books or movies, fall into any number of existing genres: comedy, drama, sci-fi, action-adventure, horror and so on.
Now that we’ve generally reviewed what anime refers to and its brief history, it’s time to answer questions such as, where to watch anime for free, where to watch free anime, where to watch anime free, or anything similar. Are you ready to find your childhood good memories again? Let’s move to the next section.
Section 2. 25 Best Sites to Watch Anime Free
Here is this section, we’ll list some 25 best sites to watch anime free. Some of these websites may have enlisted the very old anime from generations ago, like those we mentioned previously. And most of them cover different genres of anime, including the very recent anime, whether in forms of movies or TV Shows. Now before we go through them one by one, let’s first get to know their names in a list, alphabetically.
- Anime Planet
- Asian Crush
- Side Reel
- Soul Anime
Moving on, let's go through these anime websites one after another.
Loved by many and offers a smooth streaming experience, AnimeDao is one of the best anime websites in terms of video quality, ease of use, loading speed, content availability, and reliability. Depending on your network bandwidth and connection speed, you can choose the video quality from 340p up to 1080p. AinmeDao also offers English subbed or dubbed versions of both the old and the latest anime series and movies.
- Simple website layout, plus light and dark modes
- Consumes low-bandwidth
- Video quality adjustable from 340p to 1080p
- Bookmark favorite videos for next-time quick access
- Offers no download option
- Ads can be annoying
As a free anime website where you can watch anime for free, Animefreak.tv scored millions of regular viewers worldwide. It offers a vast collection of subbed/dubbed anime series and movies, and manga as well.
- Easy but eye-catching website layout
- Video sources are regularly updated
- Manga series are also available
- Ads may appear frequently
Animefrenzy is another free anime website which answers your question of where to watch anime for free. On this website, you can access to many genres of anime movies, TV Shows as well as short anime clips.
- Simple, easy and clear website layout
- Offers a live chat window for communication with others
- Short video clips are also available
- No ads pop up to interrupt browsing
- Lack of some old classics
Enjoying a good reputation for streaming online anime, AnimeHeaven offers a huge collection of both old and the latest series and movies totally for free. Most of its videos are in 720p or 1080p quality. You can search for anime among different genres, such as drama, action, comedy, mystery, thriller, and more. Besides, AnimeHeaven also a dubbed and subbed version for all the anime movies on its website.
- Easy-to-access categories
- Video quality is selected automatically
- Lack of the classic animes
- Ads may appear frequently
Known for its fast availability of the latest episodes within one hour once aired in Japan, the free anime website AnimeLab makes itself incredibly famous among anime enthusiasts. With its neat categories like recently added, popular shows, genre, etc., it is also quite easy for you to search for your wanted anime efficiently.
- Subbed/dubbed versions offered for premium users
- Update speed is super-fast
- Contains ads on free viewers
Anime Planet is another free popular anime website that users can watch free anime from its large collection of more than 45000 episodes, including comedies, horrors, adventures, sic-fi and more. It features a very cool interface plus a very pleasant video watching experience either on tablets, mobiles, desktops or large-screen TVs.
- Also offers manga
- Offers metadata information on videos
- Compatible with multi-platforms and devices
- Lack of specific video category
AnimeTake.tv is offers a comprehensive collection of online anime series and movies for users to watch anime for free. It can be easily accessed categories like genre, popular, and movies.
- Offers metadata information on animes
- Seamlessly switch to next anime
- Offers reminders on upcoming animes
- Easier search with alphabetical categorization
- Frequently appeared ads
Anilinkz is a totally free anime website where everyone can watch free anime online.
- Offers many genres of animes
- Quick access to newly added animes
- Too many ads
- Adult-only images may appear
Asian Crush website is for those die-hard fans of Asian movies and dramas. You can freely watch animes from Chinese martial arts to Japanese animes at one place.
- Offers Chinese animes and k-dramas
- Search animes by genre, region, or theme
- Too many ads
- May not be accessible in certain countries and regions
As one of the popular anime websites allowing you to watch anime for free, Chia anime offers a very pleasant anime browsing and watching experience. You can watch popular animes like Hero Academia, One-piece, Dragon ball, Kokora and many more.
- Easy categories for advanced search
- Faster video loading speed
- Allows for download for offline playback
- Offers dubbed versions
- Annoying ads popping up too frequently
As a unique multiplatform where users can stream movies, TV shows, anime, and even comics, Contv offers numerous categories of genres from horrors to romances. It even allows you to watch your favorite anime live on TV 24/7.
- Offers comics and graphic novels
- Timely updates anime library
- Offers uncut contents
- Offers special collection meant for kids
- The free version only offers limited content
As a free anime website hosting a massive collection of Asian dramas, anime, and even manga, Crunchyroll offers some of the top animes such as Naruto, Attack on Titan, Yuri on Ice, and My Hero Academia, etc.
- Search animes by genre, seasons, or popularity
- Simple and attractive layout design
- Offers trend news on animes
- Ads are really annoying on the free standard version
Funimation is a Sony-owned anime website known for releasing dubbed foreign anime and TV shows with English audio tracks, instead of Japanese audios with English subtitles.
- Offers on-going anime series
- Offers English-dubbed animes
- Ads will appear on free animes
- Dubbed animes are not free
Gogoanime.io is a free online platform where you can stream and watch anime free. It allows you to browse or search your favorite animes by day, week, or month.
- Offers genres like action, cars, horror, drama, game, kids, and more.
- Allows you to watch recent releases, dubbed, and Chinese animation series.
- You can request your favorite animes if you want
- Ads can pop up frequently
As one of the biggest online anime websites in the world, Kissanime offers anime series in all categories, including drama, Sci-Fi, horror, action, comedy, sports, and much more. Apart from allowing to watch anime for free online, Kissanime also allows you to download anime or offline playback where you don’t have a live internet connection. The free anime offered vary in quality, from 240p to 1080p. To help you better understand the anime, Kissanime also provides embedded English audio tracks and subtitles.
- Offers subbed & dubbed animes
- Offers download for offline playback
- Multiple video quality levels for you to choose
- Features advanced search with filters
- Super-fast video loading speed
- Not accessible on all devices
- Ads may apply during playback
Masterani is a free anime website where you can enjoy large array of animated movies and TV series. Besides, this website allows you to search anime series with unlimited streaming.
- Offers user-friendly layout design
- Very fast streaming speed
- Requires no mandatory registration or additional information
- Offers anime relevant comments and ratings
- Annoying ads may apply pop up quite frequently
MigNight.Pilp is a unique anime website that offers strange and scary animes and movies. If you belong to the dark and weird genre, then MidNight.Pulp in the one you don’t want to miss out on. From cult Sci-fi to horror, and much more, you can watch anime for free, but with ads unless you’re willing to subscribe to the premium ad-free version.
- Offers massive collection of rare and hard to find series
- Weekly update of episodes
- Need to log in each time you exit
- Only limited content offered in the free version
- Ads may apply in the free version
MyAnimeList, a.k.a MAL, is both an online anime website where you can watch free anime, and also a social networking platform for you to find other viewers that might share the same interest with you. It features the world largest anime and manga database (as it claims). As the name indicates, it allows you to create your own anime lists that you want to watch.
- You can read relevant posts or reviews
- You can join clubs with people of similar interests
- You can discuss with others on favorite anime topics
- Ads may apply to free version
9anime is also a unique anime website that offers most of the contents in high-quality 1080p. On this platform, you can find top quality anime series as well as movies, and you are also able to access both subbed and dubbed versions of anime without registering or paying a single penny.
- Offers free subbed/dubbed animes
- Asks for no registration
- Offers amazing 1080p quality
- Offers no download option
- Adult images may pop up
NicoNico is a little bit different as an anime website, because it not only allows you to post anime relevant comments, but also allows you to upload or share your own videos with others.
- Allows for video commenting and tagging
- Allows you to create your own list folders
- Offers anime illustrations, manga, and e-books
- Too many ads in the free version
Side Real is an anime website where you can watch free anime TV shows. Besides, you can use it to access links to episodes, reviews, ratings, and show schedules.
- Search comedy, action, fantasy, and more
- You can receive episode notifications
- Ads may apply
Hosting over 4000 anime series on its website, Soul Anime another large online platform where you can watch anime free with high quality. Moreover, Soul Anime also claims it can update new anime episodes within an hour after they are aired.
- Offers subbed/dubbed versions
- Search anime by alphabetical order
- Offers anime download
- Annoying pop-up ads
As the largest American publisher and distributor of manga, comic books and graphic novels, VIZ has been bringing the finest anime and manga to the English speaking people for 30 years. It is available free on Google Store that everyone can download to watch free anime on any Android device running ver. 2.2 and higher. Besides, it also allows die-hard anime fans to post and share anime relevant articles and reviews.
- Mobile platform friendly
- Offers huge collection of manga
- Offers subbed/dubbed versions
- Video loading speed is a little bit low
As a free TV and anime website, Tubi.tv lets you stream movies, TV shows as well as a large collection of Japanese anime classic blockbusters and brand-new shows being aired weekly.
- 100% free and no subscription required
- Allows you to bookmark movies/series to watch later
- Compatible on multiple platforms, including Apple TV
- No anime categories for search
- Ads at every 15-minute interval
Although being listed at the bottom of the recommendations thanks to the letter Y in its name as this is an alphabetical list, YouTube is definitely the one you are most familiar with. As the world’s No. 1 video sharing platform, YouTube also hosts a considerably large collection of anime shared by its users worldwide and also some official channels as well. Just enter the title of your favorite anime, and start steaming.
- Compatible on multiple platforms
- Freely adjust video quality
- You might not always be able to find what you’re after
- Ads may apply
Section 3. Download to Watch Anime Free Offline
After guiding you through the 25 most popular free anime websites, your question of where can I watch anime for free is no longer a question. However, another question may arise, that is, how can I download those free anime for offline playback? After all, not all these anime websites offer download service. What do I do if the anime I want to watch does not offer free download service? This is where and when an anime downloader software kicks in to rescue.
As the most popular video downloader software, DVDFab Video Downloader can help you download videos up to 8K from more than 1000 popular video hosting websites, including YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vimeo, DailyMotion, and many more.
Features at a Glance:
- Download Online Videos from 1000+ Websites
- Choose Your Preferred Resolution to Download
- Top-Notch Techs Ensure Fast & Efficient Downloads
- Auto-Download from Subscribed YouTube Channels
- Compatible with Windows, macOS and Android
Here below, you can learn how to download anime using this software.
Step 1 — After installation, launch DVDFab Downloader, then click the Paste URL button located at the upper left corner;
Step 2 — At the next window, paste your copied video URL into the upper box, select Video at the Format selection box, choose a video quality at the Quality selection box, then hit the Download button to start the download;
- If you want to batch download multiple videos at one go, then you can copy their URLs into a .txt file line by line, and load the .txt file using the Select file button to import all the URLs in a single time;
- DVDFab Downloader offers two separate modules that you can buy separately, the Video Downloader module and the YouTube to MP3 module at DVDFab Online Store. To choose the video option at the Format selection box, you need to purchase the Video Downloader module, otherwise, you can only try the feature as a free trial user which only allows you to download 5 videos at most, and up to 720p maximally, also some other limitations.
Step 3 — Wait for the download to complete. You have extra option to let the program shut down your computer for you automatically when the download finishes, so that you don’t have to wait in front of your computer.
Above is all that you need to know about how to use DVDFab Downloader to download anime free from the online anime websites for offline watch where a live internet connection is not available for you to stream online.
Anime as a special form of visual art, has been nurturing huge die-hard fans not only in Japan and other Asian countries, but also western countries all over the world. Traditional conception may think that anime is only for kids, which as a matter of fact, it isn’t. No matter you are kid or an adult, anime has us all covered. Not only can we feel relaxed watching anime, we can also learn things from all genres of anime. That’s probably why anime is still so popular today. And is this article, we’ve reviewed the brief history of anime, listed the 25 most popular websites where people can watch anime free, and also introduced the video downloader software to help you download free anime from those websites so that you can enjoy your favorite anime anytime, anywhere, and on any device you have.
To help you learn more about anime, we’ve wrapped up some frequently asked questions and answers for you, in case you want to dive into the deeper world of anime.
- What is anime?
In its most basic form, anime refers to animation. Interestingly enough, the name itself isn’t an abbreviation of the English word animation. Instead, it’s how you say “animated cartoon” (written アニメ) in Japanese. To a Japanese viewer, anime is any cartoon, whether it’s made in Japan or not. Outside of Japan, however, the term anime has come to mean “animation made in Japan,” or more broadly, any animated show or movie that uses signature aspects of Japanese-style animation, like vibrant colors, dramatic panning, and characteristic facial expressions.
- Is anime a unique genre?
In the U.S., most anime is classified as a niche form of entertainment, especially for adults. It’s looped in alongside other fandoms and often left to the wayside of mainstream entertainment. In Japan, however, anime is a culturally accepted and fairly basic form of entertainment for adults. This difference means that anime contains multitudes, with content produced for a wide range of viewers. From drama, action, and romance to historical fiction, horror, comedy, and more—there’s a series to match any taste.
- What’s the difference between dubbed and subbed anime?
Anime comes in two formats: Dubbed and subbed. Subbed plays the original Japanese vocal track for the show or movie you’re watching with English (or whatever language you’re watching in) subtitles. Dubbed, on the other hand, features an English-speaking cast of voice-over actors working from a translated script.
- What’s the difference between manga and anime?
Manga are Japanese comic books, which often serve as the inspiration for an anime series. While in America manga refers only to comics from Japan, “manga” is just the Japanese word for comic books. So in Japan, all comics are technically manga.