What is the Croatian official currency?
From the 1st January 2023, the Euro became the new Croatian official currency as the country joined the Eurozone. The currency had been the Kuna up until 2023 (see below) and there is still a lot of nostalgia for the Kuna in Croatia!
Croatia has chosen four proposals for the design of the national side of Euro coins, all of which contain motifs with a Croatian checkerboard (sahovnica in Croatian) in the background. All coins show the 12 stars of the European flag.
2 Euro Coin – the motif of a geographical map of Croatia with a Croatian checkerboard in the background
1 Euro Coin – the marten (called kuna in Croatian) motif with a Croatian checkerboard in the background
50, 20 and 10 Cents Coins –portrait of the inventor and engineer Nikola Tesla
5, 2 and 1 Cents Coins – the motif is the letters “HR” (shortened for Croatia in Croatian language) written in angular Glagolitic script. Glagolitic is the oldest known Slavic script and was used in Croatia until the 19th century.
Croatian Kuna (HRK) was the Croatian official currency from the 30th of May 1994 to the 31st of December 2022. The Euro-Kuna exchange rate upon switching currencies on 1st January 2023 was 1 Euro = 7.5345 Kuna.
Throughout history, Croatia used numerous currencies on its territory when it was a part of different empires (such as the Austro-Hungarian Empire, currency: gulden) or Federal Republics (such as Yugoslavia, currency: dinar).
When translated from the Croatian language, the Kuna was named after the ‘marten’, an animal similar to a weasel or a ferret. The name derives from the use of marten fur in the Croatian provinces of Slavonia, Kvarner and Istria during the Medieval Era for trade and paying taxes.
The Kuna was broken down into a smaller denomination called the Lipa (lp), which didn’t have a high value. Lipa coins came in values of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 (1 Kuna = 100 Lipa).
Kuna coins came in denominations of 1, 2 and 5. Each one of these coins had a different animal imprinted on the reverse.
Croatian Kuna notes were the most common payment source. Kuna notes came in denominations of 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000. Motifs on Kuna notes were usually Croatian leaders, musicians, poets, artists, and famous monuments.