15 Best Anime Movies Like Howl’s Moving Castle

Studio Ghibli and Hayao Miyazaki are the names that rule over a million hearts. Thanks to the Japanese Animation for bringing these two together to entertain our souls and hearts with highest-grossing anime movies. They created masterpieces like Howl’s Moving Castle and made a name in history. Hence, I have brought you a list of the best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle today. 

Suppose you are searching for anime similar to Howl’s Moving Castle. In that case, you are looking for anime movies with magic, fantasy, adventure, handsome characters, and romance. You are potentially searching for plots that relate to reality, broaden your horizon, and immerse you in the world of fiction and fantasy. 

Add this to your information: Howl’s Moving Castle was originally a Novel by Diana Wynne Jones. Because of its popularity, it was later adapted into a movie by Hayao Miyazaki. Should we begin our list for today? Here we go!

Magical Films Like Howl’s Moving Castle That Will Spellbind You Infinitely


  • Adventure, fantasy, magic, top-notch Animation, and some romantic stories await you including different anime genres
  • You will be falling in love with some of the handsome characters uncontrollably. 
  • The list is based completely on personal preferences.

15. Nausicaa Of The Valley Of The End 

anime movies like howl's moving castle; nausicaa of the valley of the wind
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The story may not resemble Howl’s Moving Castle and should not be on the list of best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle. Still, a touch of fantasy, war, and a princess ambitious enough to die for her loved ones is enough to enjoy. 

The plot is set in a distant future and a dystopian world. The world is divided into Kingdoms, and many evils lurk, including toxins and giant insects. The story focuses on the young and fierce Princess Nausicaa

She tries her best to protect her Kingdom, Valley of the End, from the attacks of other Kingdoms. In this battle, she discovers that this destruction is to find a relic, a weapon of mass destruction. Her struggles change from saving her Kingdom to saving their world

14. Whisper Of The Heart 

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This is another movie from Studio Ghibli that will let you focus more on yourself than the world around you. The Animation may not suffice, but the plot and characters still do the deed. With a touch of fantasy, this movie has made it to the top anime list, such as Howl’s Moving Castle. 

The plot centers on a young girl, Shizuku, who shares her love for the books. Her mundane life becomes interesting when she encounters a young boy, Seiji, who shares her passion for books. As the youngsters become friends, they discover each other’s minds.

Shizuku understands that Seiji has a dream to follow, but she has yet to achieve a goal. Her journey of self-discovery begins when she listens to the whispers of her heart. 

13. Porco Rosso

best anime movies like Howl's moving castle; PORCO ROSSO
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Fantasy, planes instead of a moving castle, and a curse are some commonalities that this one has with Howl’s Moving Castle. Hence, this is on our list of best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle. 

This one is also from Studio Ghibli, so it does not fall short of expectations. The movie tells the story of a Pilot, Marco Pagot, from World War I. After a curse hits him and he turns into a pig, he becomes Porco Rosso. Living as a hunter, he survives many hardships. 

However, a certain incident allows him to regain his reputation and the girl he loves. It may be typical given the time now, but still, it has all the elements to enjoy it as a fantasy movie. 

12. Marry And The Witch’s Flower 

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This is yet another movie similar to Howl’s Moving Castle because of its fantasy element and, yes, the witches. The story is very basic yet entertaining and can be best for kids on a Friday night. 

The plot focuses on Mary, a young, carefree, and curious girl. Her life takes an unexpected turn when she stumbles upon a flower sought by witches. Unbeknownst to her, a broomstick takes her to the School of Witches, and now she has to survive there as a new student. 

From a random girl to a witch student in a school of witches, her life changes drastically. Still, this will lead to her self-discovery, and she will emerge as a strong girl the world didn’t think of.

11. The Cat Returns

best anime movies like howl's moving castle: The Cat Returns anime
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You may find it a little surprising, but this was the second movie by Studio Ghibli directed by someone else instead of Hayao Miyazaki or Isao Takahata. Still, the movie won many awards. Also, this one is a spin-off of the anime film Whisper of the Heart. 

So, if you want films like Howl’s Moving Castle, add this to your list. The story brings in a fantasy where Haru, a high school girl, is in a predicament. She is dragged into their world after she saves a Cat Prince from the Cat Kingdom. 

She tries her best to survive and find a way to get back to her world. Unfortunately, the more she struggles, the more she notices that she is becoming more of a cat. Nonetheless, this is Haru’s journey of self-discovery, one that will change her for the better.

10. My Neighbor Totoro

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If you are looking for top anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle, you will find them mostly from Studio Ghibli. The next on our list is the same. With a touch of fantasy and mythical creatures, this anime movie is one of the best anime movies for kids

The story focuses on two young sisters, Satsuki and Mei. When they relocate to a town because of her ill mother, their life is touched by magic. The sisters encounter a giant rabbit-like mystical creature, Totoro, and become friends with him. 

They witness magic, fantasy, and friendship in ways they didn’t even imagine. 

9. Castle In The Sky 

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Just FYI, Castle In the Sky was the first film ever produced by Studio Ghibli and won the best animation award of that time. So, you see, Studio Ghibli got a good start naturally. It resembles Howl’s Moving Castle strikingly because it has airships instead of Howl’s castle; it has magic and a touch of fantasy

Above all, a damsel in distress was rescued by her handsome prince. So, it should be on our list of best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle, right! The story centers on a young girl, Sheeta. 

Abducted because of her magical amulet and imprisoned in an airship, she still hopes for a free future. That hope soon turns into reality when the airship is attacked by pirates. She meets young boy Pazu once she escapes the airship, and the duo journeys to Laputa, the mystical flying castle.  

8. Brave Story 

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It is one of the finest movies you will have for kids, and it is an anime similar to Howl’s Moving Castle in many ways. The magic, fantasy, and war elements with monsters and whatnot are surely what you have already enjoyed with Howl. 

So, we brought this to our list of best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle. The plot is a short story and focuses on an 11-year-old, Wataru. His dark life, where his father is gone, and his mother is in a hospital, is hopeless for him.

Nonetheless, Wataru is determined to change this disturbed fate. Hence, enters the world of magic, monsters and magical creatures via a door only to find the Goddess of Destiny. Still, while reaching his goal, he faces hardships, survives some deadly battles, and turns into a Wataru no one expected.   

7. Origin: Spirit Of The Past

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If you are looking for top anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle with a lot of magic, fantasy, a little romance, and action, then you have got the right one, fellas. Origin: Spirit of the Past is a fantasy film that sometimes gives you goosebumps and tears.

The plot is set in a dystopian world far in the future. It centers on Agito, a soft-hearted and ambitious boy. As fate, he stumbles upon an ancient relic, a sleeping girl, Toola, who holds the key to bringing the world to a new light. 

The story progresses as Toola is targeted, and Agito tries to help her and save his people. However, a regular boy can not withstand the mighty force of an army. So, he receives help from the spirit of the forests and becomes a true hero. 

6. Into The Forest Of Fireflies

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If you are into fantasy manga, you may find it interesting. Thanks to Japanese Animation for turning this soft yet heart-touching fantasy manga into a movie. The touch of fantasy, a curse, and the light romance between the leads are way too similar to Howl’s Moving Castle. 

So, without a second thought, we brought this one to our list of the best anime movies, such as Howl’s Moving Castle. The plot portrays a forest filled with mystical creatures, often named fireflies. The six-year-old Hotarou finds herself lost in the forest with no help. 

Like fate, a mysterious silver-haired boy, Gin, with a mask, approaches Hotarou and helps her. The duo forms a deep bond that traverses many years and blossoms into love. Unfortunately, Gin suffers from a curse, leading to hardships in their relationship. Watch it if you want to know how it ends. 

5. Suzume

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This one is easily among the anime movies with handsome characters because of its plainly stylish main lead. This is enough reason for it to be on the list of best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle. You will find a striking resemblance between Souta and Howl. 

It is an award-winning movie, and thanks to the OST, it has fans worldwide.  The plot focuses on Suzume, a high school girl. She encounters a mysterious man, Souta, and follows him to the runes. 

Fate happens, and she finds a magical door leading to another world. Her life changes that very moment. Suzume and Souta bond to keep the monsters of the other world away from their own, and their story develops

4.  A Whisker Away

A Whisker Away
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This one is from Studio Colorido but it is a masterpiece when it comes to emotions, characters and depth of the plot. The touch of fantasy is exceptional, and the Animation will make you fall for it. Handsome characters are a plus. You may enjoy it as your regular high school love story.

The plot focuses on a high school student named Miyo. She is living a lifeless life because of her broken family. Still, a ray of hope shines in her dark life when she encounters her high school fellow, Kento

She wishes to be close to him and share his life, so she turns into a white cat. Unfortunately, a cat can’t do much when it comes to sharing feelings. Miyo contemplates becoming a human and meeting her love or staying a cat to be close to him. 

3. Princess Mononoke 

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If you are looking for top anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle, you can surely not miss this one. It is another artwork from Studio Ghibli that touched many hearts. The story, art, Animation, and characters were more than love.

It has won many awards and has every right to be on our list of best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle. The story is set in a fantasy world where two kingdoms are at war. One of the kingdoms tries to take over the spirit forest, home to many powerful spiritual beasts.

Nonetheless, the young and fierce Princess Mononoke stands as the guardian of the forest. She encounters a young Prince, Ashitaka, who shares her values. The duo join forces to protect the forest and stop the war. Still, it is a war, so you can expect some heart-wrenching goodbyes

2. The Secret World Of Arrietty

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With a perfect blend of fantasy, adventure, and friendship that transitions to love and ideal Animation, this movie has all the rights to be on the list of best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle. 

This one is undoubtedly a masterpiece from Studio Ghibli because the plot and the characters are to die for. The plot focuses on a young boy, Shou, when he visits her aunt during the summer. His boring, mundane life turns a new leaf when he encounters Arrietty, a small human being. 

Bewildered, Shou is attracted to Arrietty and her unique world. As the duo grow close, they face hardships. It is only natural for a friendship like theirs to be a target of many unwanted difficulties and troubles. 

1. Spirited Away

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A huge thanks to Studio Ghibli for blessing our childhood with a masterpiece like Spirited Away. It is among the highest-grossing films ever, thanks to Japanese Animation for its top-notch Animation. The story resembles Howl’s Moving Castle because you will have magic, a fantasy world, a love story, and adventure

Hence, this one had to be on our list of the best anime movies like Howl’s Moving Castle. Also, if you are looking for anime movies with monsters, this one is surely a good watch. The story stars Chihiro, a 10-year-old girl. 

By nature, she is naive, stubborn, and curious, and this curiosity takes her to a world of spirits. Entrapped in the magical world, she tries to save her parents and return to her own world. Survival there is impossible; however, Chihiro seems more lively and hopeful with a special friend, Haku

Final Notes: 

With this, let’s end our list of movies similar to Howl’s Moving Castle. I hope you enjoyed going through the list with all sorts of emotions. As always, I am sure I missed many more amazing stories. Thus. I would like you to be part of my list and tell me some stories you enjoyed watching

If you liked reading about the anime movie recommendations, then visit us again for more. Until Next Time!

What are the best fantasy anime movies similar to Howl’s Moving Castle?

So, for anime movies similar to Howl’s Moving Castle, I have already given my fellow anime fans a list to choose from. Still, many still need to be mentioned here, and they are amazing to enjoy. For Example, Wolf Children, Paprika, Tales from Earthsea, Bubble, and Kiki’s Delivery Service and many others.

Is Howl’s Moving Castle based on a book?

Yes, this one is based on a novel written by Diana Wynne Jones. It was later adapted by Studio Ghibli, and with Hayao Miyazaki, it was turned into an animated film thanks to Japanese Animation.  

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