Despite Croatia being part of the European Union, it still trades in its own currency, the Kuna; its sign is Kn and currency code HRK.
In Croatian Kuna means pine marten, referring to the weasel-like animal found in Eurasia and North America.
In the past, the pine marten’s fur was used for trading, hence the symbolism still used in their currency.
When traveling to Croatia for holiday, it is best not to get Croatian Kuna in large quantities.
Euro’s, US Dollars, and GB Pound are easily exchangeable in a local bank or exchange office within Croatia, yet the easiest way to get Kuna is to use an ATM which are readily available even on the Croatian islands.
Note that if you do decide to arrange funds before your trip, you may have to order Kuna currency in advance from your bank or local foreign exchange.
Kuna banknotes come in 8 denominations: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000 Kuna notes.
When shopping and spending on holiday, it is best to try and use smaller notes as producing a 500 or 1000 Kn banknote may be received with a somewhat stunned reaction.
Croatian Kuna banknotes feature prominent Croatians on the front of the note and symbolic architectural structures on the back.
The geometric figures at lower left on the front (except the 5-kuna note) are printed for braille recognition by the blind.
To the right of the coat of arms on the front is a micro printed version of the Croatian national anthem, Our Beautiful Homeland.
Kuna coins are all silver in 3 different amounts: 1, 2 and 5 Kn coins. One Kuna is made of 100 Lipa (Lp).
These smaller coins are either silver or golden in the following denominations: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50.
They aren’t worth much so it is best to spend them while still on holiday than to tag them along back home with you.
Some private accommodation services may accept Euros, but generally, you will have to pay with Kuna in all restaurants, shops, and hotels.
Quick facts about Kuna banknote design prominent figures (front) and architectural structures (back):
- 5 Kuna: Front: Count Fran Krsto Frankopan with the Old Fort and layout of the old Varaždin castle on the back.
- 10 Kuna: Istrian bishop Juraj Dobrila and The Pula Arena and Motovun town layout.
- 20 Kuna: Duke Josip Jelačić and The Eltz Manor in Vukovar and the Vučedol Dove.
- 50 Kuna: Poet and Dubrovnik nobleman Ivan Gundulić with The Old City of Dubrovnik and its Rector’s Palace.
- 100 Kuna: Duke and poet Ivan Mažuranić with St. Vitus Cathedral in Rijeka and its layout.
- 200 Kuna: Politician Stjepan Radić with The old General Command Building in Osijek.
- 500 Kuna: Poet and Split nobleman Marko Marulić with the Diocletian’s Palace in Split.
- 1000 Kuna: Politician Ante Starčević with the Statue of King Tomislav and the Zagreb Cathedral.
Why not see if you can recognize these architectural structures during your Croatia holiday sightseeing? Happy souvenir shopping!