10 most beautiful currencies from around the world

The easiest way to double your money is to fold it and put it back where you took it out from. But what if the money is so beautiful that you won’t find your heart to fold it or even spend it?

Seeing creativity manifest itself into currency is what we are spotting here!  The most beautiful currency borrowed from the past, present and future are pointed out below, so put your art glasses on and enjoy the view!

I. The most beautiful currency from the past:

  1. Athenian Tetradrachm

This is ancient Greek currency specific to Athens, minted more than 2000 years ago. This ancient world coin on one side shows head of Athena and the iconographic symbol of owl of Athena on the reverse.  These owls led to so much popularity and ease of exchangeability that Owls became the first of international trade currency. Presently it is valued at around $1500.

Silver tetracrachm of Athens. Image source.
Silver tetracrachm of Athens. Image source.
  1. 1933 Double eagle, U.S. 20$ Gold

This is one of the most artistic and rare coin. It shows Lady Liberty with a torch and olive branch on one side and a bald eagle flying over radiant Sun on the reverse. It was designed by Augustus Saint-Gaudens who was an American Sculptor. In 2002, this coin was sold to an anonymous bidder at Sotheby’s for a whopping $7,590,020!

Image source.
St. Gauden’s 1933 Double Eagle. Image source.
  1. 1908 Austria 100 Corona

This coin was issued to celebrate the 60 year reign of Emperor Franz Joseph I. This coin is made of 0.980 ounces of gold. It shows a regal design of a reclining woman on the reverse and this variety is rare. It was designed by the Austrian sculptor Rudolf Marschall. Maximum value at Austrian 100 Corona can be obtained is $4000.

Image Source.
1908 Austrian Corona with reclining woman. Image Source.   

II. The most beautiful and colorful currencies of the present

  1. Bermudan 2 Dollar Note

Not just us but even International Bank Note Society (IBNS) thinks this to be one of the most beautiful and aesthetically appealing bank notes. This note is a part of the vertical banknote series introduced in Bermuda in 2009. The note has a predominant Turquoise color and shows Bermuda Bluebird over a profile of Queen Elizabeth II on the front, and on reverse it shows the clock tower at Royal Naval Dockyard along with the stature of Neptune. The concept design of the Bermudan Currency’s redesign was created by designer Gene Bothwick of De La Rue.

Redesigned Bermudan Two Dollar note. Image Source.
Redesigned Bermudan Two Dollar note. Image Source.
  1. Netherlands’ Dutch Guilder Notes

Dutch banknotes are easiest to spot simply because of their striking designs. This is the most popular Dutch Bank Note design, and primarily liked because of it’s appearance. The Dutch Guilder 250 note (NLG) also referred to as the ‘lighthouse’ was designed by R.D.E. Oxenaar, who is a Dutch Graphic artist. He studied visual arts at Royal Academy of Art in The Hague. However, in 2002 this note was replaced by the Euro.

Netherland Guilder 250. Image Source.
Netherland Guilder 250. Image Source.
  1. Cook Islands 10 dollars note

This note is not acceptable anywhere else in the world and can be used only on Cook Islands. The Cook Islands primarily use New Zealand dollars but still they do print their own unique notes as well. The theme of the note has exotic Polynesian scenes drawn from their culture.

Polynesian themed currency. Image source
Polynesian themed currency. Image source
cook islands
Cook Island 10 Dollar note. Image Source.
  1. Easter Island coin

The most fascinating bit about this currency is the Easter Island heads that actually pop out! This coin gives a three dimensional view of the statues on Easter Island.

Image source.
Image source.
  1. Somalia coins

This is completely crazy, off beat and fascinating currency of modern times that makes you go , ‘Who would’ve thought that money would come to this?’. Somalia coins in the shape of Lamborghini sports car, heavy metal guitar, animal kingdom and motor cycle are truly wacky and colorful!

Image Source.
Somalian Currency Coin Car Set. Image Source.
Image Source.
Somalia Currency coin guitar set. Image Source.

The future!

Special mention has to go to the artists who imagine what currency should be like in future! The Guardian made famous artists and storytellers come together to create their own concept bank notes which interpret our existing society norms, cultural, political and environmental problems, popular culture and our planet earth! These artists vision for currency of the future is truly incredible.

  1. Tracey Emin

Tracey Emin is an English contemporary artist. The most important thing that this concept note reflects as compared to the traditional bank notes is that nobody truly cares about politicians’ face being on the currency anymore. This note is most definitely the best examples of anti capitalism! This artwork speaks volumes about present time scenario and quite possibly the future of money?

Image source.
Image source.
  1. Some artists are doing something entirely creative with the money, to well, make more money! This has to be the most extraordinary work of art using origami technique, art made from money!

    Image Source.
    Image Source.

Last but not the least

This next one is for those who would like to put their money to better use. Or not.  Make way, for the wallpaper made out of money which looks artistically classic. If you have the money to spare or blow!

Image source.
Money wall paper. Image source.

Well they said it right, money just doesn’t stop at anything! It was there in the past, it is there in the present and whether some people like it or not it will be there in the future! Money does buy a lot of things and will continue to do so too. Now who could disagree to that!

[The edited version of this article written by me was also published on April 20, 2015 on Artsome.co’s  blog. Click here to view the edited version.] You can now also follow me for live updates on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus! Will love to see you there!

Your art lust driven faffer,




Add yours →

  1. This post is so interesting! Never would have thought about having a couple of fancy cars in my pocket I could buy things with 😁
    Great post 👌

  2. Interesting post. I like the Bermuda 2 dollar note and Somalia coin sets. 🙂

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