2021 Coin of the Year Award Nominees

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The Coin of the Year Award is one of the most important awards for modern coins. It is presented by World Coin News and sponsored by The Journal of East Asian Numismatics. Because of Covid-19 the Nominating Committee met virtually on 3 November 2020, as Numismatic News reported, to choose 100 nominees for the Coin of the Year Award 2021 out of the first 400 coin nominees. All coins were issued or minted in 2019. Each year, the award honors outstanding coin designs from all over the world. Here is a full list of the 100 nominees in all 10 categories:

Most Historically Significant Coin

  • Australia, KM-3069, 5 Dollar, Silver, Mutiny and Rebellion: HMS Bounty
  • Austria, KM-3307, 100 Euro, Gold, Magic of Gold: The Gold of Mesopotamia
  • Belgium, KM-387, 2 Euro, Bi-Metallic, 450th Anniversary of the Death of Pieter Bruegel the Elder
  • France, KM-2755, 10 Euro, Silver, Eras of Europe
  • Great Britain, KM-1730a, 500 Pound, Silver, 200th Anniversary of the Birth Year of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert
  • Ireland, KM-99, 2 Euro, Bi-Metallic, 100th Anniversary of the First Dáil Éireann
  • Italy, KM-436, 10 Euro, Silver with Gold, Explorers Series: Christopher Columbus
  • Poland, KM-1038, 10 Zloty, Silver, 200th Anniversary of Jan Matejko Academy of Fine Arts
  • Portugal, KM-895, 2 Euro, Bi-Metallic, 500th Anniversary of Magellan’s Circumnavigation of Earth
  • South Africa, KM-693, 100 Rand,Gold, Natura Series: Taung Child

Best Contemporary Event Coin

  • Belgium, KM-395, 5 Euro, Silver, 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing
  • Canada, KM-2760, 1 Dollar, Silver, 75th Anniversary of D-Day
  • France, KM-2564, 10 Euro, Silver, Notre-Dame Cathedral
  • Japan, KM-287, 10,000 Yen, Gold, 30th Anniversary of the Enthronement of New Emperor
  • Latvia, KM-207, 5 Euro, Silver, War of Independence
  • North Korea, KM-1322, 1 Won, Brass, Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un
  • Russia, KM-1862, 3 Rouble, Silver, 5th Anniversary of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU)
  • South Africa, KM-691, 50 Rand, Bronze Alloy, 25 Years of Democracy
  • Spain, KM-1433, 10 Euro, Silver, 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing
  • United States, KM-693, 1 Dollar, Silver, 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing

Best Gold Coin

  • Austria, KM-3306, 50 Euro, Gold, The Vienna Schools of Psychotherapy: Viktor Frankl
  • Belgium, KM-393, 25 Euro, Gold, 90th Anniversary of the Birth of Audrey Hepburn
  • Canada, KM-2900, 200 Dollar, Gold, Early Canadian History
  • China, KM-2491, 100 Yuan, Gold, Art of Chinese Calligraphy
  • France, KM-2739, 200 Euro, Gold, Woman of French History: Marie Curie
  • Hungary, KM-979, 50,000 Forint, Gold, Saints of the Árpád-Dynasty: Saint Margaret
  • Mongolia, KM-399, 1,000 Togrog, Gold, Wildlife Protection: Gobi Bear
  • Portugal, KM-902b, 7.5 Euro, Gold, 500th Anniversary of Magellan’s Circumnavigation of Earth
  • South Africa, KM-692, 50 Rand, Gold, Africa’s Big 5: Lion
  • United States, KM-710, 100 Dollar, Gold, American Liberty High Relief Gold Coin Series

Best Silver Coin

  • Australia, KM-3073, 5 Dollar, Silver, Versailles Centenary
  • Austria, KM-3304, 20 Euro, Silver, Reaching for the Sky: The Dream of Flight
  • China, KM-2465, 10 Yuan, Silver, World Heritage: Ping Yao
  • Germany, KM-379, 20 Euro, Silver, 100th Anniversary of the Bauhaus
  • Italy, KM-437, 10 Euro, Silver, Italy of Arts: Duomo of Milan
  • Latvia, KM-204, 5 Euro, Silver, Latvian Poet Kārlis Skalbe
  • Netherlands, KM-409, 5 Euro, Silver, 75th Anniversary of Operation Market Garden
  • Portugal, KM-899a, 5 Euro, Silver, Endangered Flora: Tuberaria Major
  • Ukraine, KM-973, 5 Hryvnia, Silver, The Cold Ravine
  • United States, KM-693, 1 Dollar, Silver, 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11

Best Crown

  • Australia, KM-3072, 5 Dollar, Silver, The Earth and Beyond: The Sun
  • Canada, KM-2786, 5 Dollars, Silver, 200th Anniversary of the Birth of Her Majesty Queen Victoria
  • Cook Islands, KM-1889, 5 Dollar, Silver, Titanium, Chang’e-4: Space Panda
  • Cyprus, KM-107, 5 Euro, Silver, 30th Anniversary of the Founding of the University of Cyprus
  • France, KM-2566, 10 Euro, Silver, Gilt, Rhodium, Paris’ Treasures, City of Lights: Eiffel Tower
  • Hungary, KM-964, 2,000 Forint, Copper-Zinc, National Memorial Sites of Hungary
  • Japan, KM-Y284, 1,000 Yen, Silver, Olympic Games, Tokyo 2020: Judo
  • Lithuania, KM-253, 20 Euro, Silver, Lithuanian Castles and Manors
  • Mongolia, KM-389, 500 Togrog, Silver, Wildlife Protection: Gobi Bear
  • United States, KM-689, 1 Dollar, Silver, 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11

Best Circulating Coin

  • Australia, KM-2963, 50 Cent, Cupronickel, International Year of Indigenous Languages
  • Brazil, KM-2963, 1 Real, Bi-Metallic, 25th Anniversary of Real Introduction
  • Canada, KM-2757, 1 Dollar, Brass-Plated Steel, 50 Years of Progress in Advancing LGBTQ2 Rights
  • Germany, KM-380, 2 Euro, Bi-Metallic, 30th Anniversary of the Fall of Berlin Wall
  • Greece, KM-315, 2 Euro, Cupronickel, Nickel-Brass, Greek Poet Andreas Kalvos
  • Hungary, KM-980, 50 Forint, Base Metal, 2019 FIE World Fencing Championship in Budapest
  • Japan, KM-Y269, 100 Yen, Cupronickel, Copper, Olympic Games: Tokyo 2020
  • Panama, KM-169, 1 Balboa, Bi-Metallic, Jornada Mundial de la Juventud: World Youth Day
  • Peru, KM-418, 1 Sol, Nickel-Brass, Endangered Wildlife of Peru: Andean Mountain Cat
  • United States, KM-695, Quarter-Dollar, Cupronickel, America the Beautiful: American Memorial Park

Best Bi-Metallic Coin

  • Austria, KM-3305, 25 Euro, Silver Niobium, Artificial Intelligence
  • Canada, KM-2750, 25 Cent, Brass, Cupronickel, Bronze, 35th Anniversary of the First Canadian in Space
  • Egypt, KM-1034, 1 Pound, Bi-Metallic, New Capital City of Alamein
  • Estonia, KM-90, 2 Euro, Bi-Metallic, 150th Anniversary of the Song Celebration
  • Finland, KM-293, 2 Euro, Nickel-Brass Center, Copper-Nickel Ring, Finnish Constitution Act of 1919
  • France, KM-2560, 2 Euro, Bi-Metallic, 60th Anniversary of Asterix
  • Great Britain, KM-1693, 2 Pound, Cupronickel Center, Nickel-Brass Ring, Captain Cook
  • Kazakhstan, KM-421, 500 Tenge, Silver with Tantalum Insert, Tobyl Oishyly (Tobol Thinker)
  • Poland, KM-1028, 5 Zloty, Bi-Metallic, Discover Poland: Frombork Cathedral
  • Vatican, KM-517, 2 Euro, Bi-Metallic, 25th Anniversary of the Restoration of the Sistine Chapel

Most Artistic Coin

  • Canada, KM-2838, 20 Dollar, Silver, Eagle Feather
  • China, KM-2487, 80 Yuan, Gold, Auspicious Culture
  • Cook Islands, KM-1887, 5 Dollar, Silver, Trapped
  • France, KM-2567, 10 Euro, Silver, Fall of the Berlin Wall
  • Italy, KM-437, 10 Euro, Silver, Italy of Arts: Duomo of Milan
  • Latvia, KM-205, 5 Euro, Silver, Painter Niklavs Strunke
  • Palau, KM-603, 10 Dollar, Silver, Flowers: Poppy
  • San Marino, KM-585, 5 Euro, Silver, International Forestry Day
  • Switzerland, KM-175, 20 Franc, Silver with Color, 100th Anniversary of Circus Knie
  • Tanzania, KM-114, 1,000 Shilling, Silver with Pano Technology Plating, Nano Panda

Most Innovative Coin

  • Australia, KM-3071, 5 Dollar, Silver, Black Nickel Plating, Gilt, Echoes of Australian Fauna: Lesser Bilby
  • Canada, KM-2852, 25 Dollar, Silver, High Relief Wolf
  • Cook Islands, KM-1897, 20 Dollar, Silver, Meteorites: Dinosaur Extinction
  • France, KM-2563, 10 Euro, Silver, Mona Lisa
  • Germany, KM-382, 10 Euro, Copper Nickel, Polymer, Air and Motion
  • Lithuania, KM-250, 10 Euro, Silver, Gender Equality
  • Mongolia, KM-386, 500 Togrog, Silver, Numismatic Sculptures: Edelweiss
  • Niue, KM-2278, 5 Dollar, Silver with Swarovski Crystals, Creation of the World
  • Palau, KM-604, 20 Dollar, Silver, Micropuzzle Treasures: Starry Night
  • Tuvalu, KM-416, 2 Dollar, Silver, Silk Road Abacus

Most Inspirational Coin

  • Austria, KM-3302, 20 Euro, Silver, Reaching for the Sky: Moon Landing
  • Benin, KM-105, 1,000 Franc, Silver, 50th Anniversary of Woodstock
  • Canada, KM-2807, 10 Dollar, Silver, 50 Years of Progress in Advancing LGBTQ2 Rights
  • France, KM-2564, 10 Euro, Silver, Notre Dame Cathedral
  • Great Britain, KM-1676a, 50 Pence, Silver, Innovation in Science: Stephen Hawking
  • Latvia, KM-207, 5 Euro, Silver, Latvian War of Independence
  • Lithuania, KM-254, 50 Euro, Gold, Struggle for Freedom
  • Portugal, KM-900a, 5 Euro, Silver, 45th Anniversary of the Carnation Revolution
  • South Africa, KM-691, 50 Rand, Bronze Alloy, 25 Years of Constitutional Democracy
  • Ukraine, KM-979, 5 Hryven, Nickel-Silver, 75th Anniversary of Ukraine’s Liberation


Here you can find the 2020 Coin of the Year winners.

The big subject recurring on many coins minted in 2019 was the Landing on the Moon. If you want to learn more about this motif on coins, don’t miss our article “50 Years Later. The Moon Landing As a Numismatic Event”.