Best Gold Coins to Buy

Posted - July 12, 2023
Best Gold Coins to Buy

Shopping for gold coins can be an overwhelming process. While investing in pure bullion products like gold bars can be a great way to build and diversify your investment portfolio, the sheer variety of items on the market can make it tough for consumers to find the right coins for them. How do you know which gold products are going to be right for your growing investment collection? 

What are the best gold coins to buy? Today, we’re taking a look at some of the top gold bullion coins in the industry. Hero Bullion sells gold coins from around the world, and we’re proud to represent some of the most respected brands available. We’ll also provide our readers with some helpful information about the investment process in our guide, including how to evaluate dealers and a few tips for properly storing coins. 

Factors to Consider When Buying Gold Coins

Before we get to the best gold coins to buy, let’s take a few moments to review three things every investor should keep in mind before investing in gold coins. Below, we’ll cover purity and fineness, weight and size options, and mint reputation. 

Purity and Fineness

Gold coins can be minted with several different purity levels. Coins like the American Gold Eagle are only struck with 91.67 percent pure gold bullion, while the Canadian Gold Maple and Gold Britannia Coins contain a fineness of .9999. The purity of a gold piece directly impacts its value. This should come as no surprise; a purer gold coin will contain more gold, increasing its melt value compared to less pure pieces. 

Just because a piece is not completely pure doesn’t mean it’s worthless. In fact, some investors actually prefer to buy .9167 gold coins because these products offer a higher durability than .9999 variants. Which gold purity is best to buy? This depends on your personal preferences and investment objectives. 

Which gold coins are 100% gold? Unfortunately, no 100% gold coin exists. For gold to be malleable enough to be formed into a gold coin, it needs to be mixed with at least some very small bit of another metal. 

Weight and Size Options

Many of the best gold coins to buy come in various weights and denominations. Some coins, like the American Platinum Eagle, are only minted in full 1 oz weights. Other gold coins are distributed in sizes that can go all the way down to 1/10 oz. 

Why would investors buy coins of lower denominations? The answer for many collectors has to do with liquidity. Whenever you choose to sell your gold coins, it’ll be easier to get rid of a tenth of an ounce than one full ounce at a time. Some collectors also like to buy many different coins, and buying smaller weights allows them to collect coins from around the world without breaking the bank. 

What are the best gold coins to buy with various denominations? We tend to love the variety offered by the Canadian Gold Maple Coin, which comes in 1/10, ¼, ½, and 1 oz versions. Luckily, the best gold coins to buy come from all around the world, so you have several options to choose from when planning for your next investment. 

Recognized and Reputable Coin Mints

The best gold coins to buy come from some of the world’s most recognizable mints. We’ll cover three of the world’s most respected mints below: the Royal British Mint, the U.S. Mint, and the Royal Canadian Mint. 

File:Old US Mint (San Francisco) 3.JPG - Wikimedia Commons
United States Mint

American Gold Eagles are produced by the U.S. Mint. This silver, gold, and platinum distributor has sold hundreds of millions of American coins to collectors everywhere. There’s a reason the world’s best gold coins to buy frequently come from the United States Mint. Rich American symbolism and iconography are core design elements behind each of the U.S. Mint’s coins.

The Royal British Mint is one of the world’s oldest mints, and their reputation spans over one-thousand years. Gold Britannias are some of the best gold coins to buy, and they certainly remain the British Mint’s best-selling gold products. 

Originally a subsidiary of the British Mint, the Royal Canadian Mint has cemented its legacy as a formidable gold coin manufacturer in its own right. Canadian Gold Maples are always popular sellers, and the exceptional attention to detail offered by the Canadian-run mint is impressive. 

Best Gold Coins to Buy

It’s finally time! Let’s take a look at some of the best gold coins to buy. We’ll cover three categories of gold coins in this section: international coins, historic gold coins, and investment-grade coins. By the end of this subsection, you should have a solid grasp of some of the best gold coins to buy on the market today. 

Popular International Gold Coins

American Gold Eagles and Canadian Gold Maple Leaf Coins offer exceptional appeal to international investors. Both coins provide a glimpse into the national identity of their manufacturers, as well as the cultures they represent. 

American Gold Eagle

American Gold Eagles have already popped up a few times in our guide – and with good reason. These are some of the most recognizable bullion coins available, which is why we consider them some of the best gold coins to buy. The coin’s obverse shows Lady Liberty as she walks toward a rising sun, while the reverse-side of the piece depicts an American bald eagle, national bird of the United States.

Gold Eagle
1 oz American Gold Eagle Coin

The reverse of the American Gold Eagle has actually changed in the past few years. Brand new Type 2 American Gold Eagles show the bust of a stationary eagle, rather than the flying eagle that decorated previous Type 1 coins. 

Canadian Gold Maple Leaf

America’s neighbors to the North also mint one of the world’s best gold coins to buy. The Canadian Gold Maple is a favorite for investors everywhere. As the name of the coin suggests, its reverse shows a highly detailed Canadian Maple Leaf, national symbol and icon of Canadian culture and history. 

Obverses for Canadian Gold Maples depict the current monarch of Great Britain, a not-so-subtle nod to the Canadian Mint’s history as a subsidiary of the Royal British Mint. Earlier versions of the coin featured Queen Elizabeth II, although future editions are likely to include King Charles III. 

Historic Gold Coins

While the Canadian Gold Maple and American Gold Eagle do dominate the global coin market and are clearly two of the best gold coins to buy, they don’t quite offer the same historical significance of the two coins we’re outlining below. Both the Gold Britannia and the South African Krugerrand offer exceptional historical significance. 

Gold Britannia

The modern bullion Gold Britannia has only been minted since 1987, but the actual history of the coin’s design dates back thousands of years. Minted with .9999 pure gold, the coin depicts Britannia on its reverse. Britannia is the female personification of the British Empire; she appears here wearing her flowing gown and crown while carrying the shield of Great Britain and a trident in her hands.

Best Gold Coins to Buy
1 oz Gold Britannia Coin

On the obverse, you’ll see the familiar face of Britain’s current king/queen. 2023 is the first year of Britannia’s yearly releases that will feature King Charles III instead of Queen Elizabeth II. The Gold Britannia’s fascinating history as a symbol of British culture makes it one of the best gold coins to buy. 

South African Krugerrand

Featuring the image of controversial South African political figure Paul Kruger, the Krugerrand offers one of the strangest histories of any coin on our list. Because of Kruger’s role in South Africa’s apartheid government, the Gold Krugerrand was banned in several countries during the 1980s. 

Today, the coin remains one of the best gold coins to buy. It’s a favorite for millions of coin collectors, and the extremely interesting historical background of this piece is one major reason why. 

Investment-Grade Gold Coins

The best gold coins to buy are valuable for several different reasons. We discussed culturally and historically important coins above, but there’s another category of gold coin that warrants discussion in today’s blog post. Below, we’ll talk about two coins with impressive historical value appreciation. We like to call these coins investment-grade gold coins. 

Australian Kangaroo/Nugget

Australian Kangaroos, also known as Gold Nuggets, remain one of the Perth Mint’s most popular gold coins. In addition to being one of the best gold coins to buy for its exceptional numismatic value, the coin also changes reverse-side designs each year. One other coin that does this is the Chinese Gold Panda minted by China’s minting system. 

We also love the various denominations offered by the Australian Gold Nugget. The coin is minted in 1/10, ¼, ½, 1, 2, and 10 oz coins. For collectors working with an especially large budget, the Australian Gold Kangaroo Coin also comes in 1 kg variations. 

Austrian Philharmonic 

The Philharmonic is produced by the Austrian Mint based out of Vienna. This coin doesn’t feature an animal or a human, unlike most of the coins on our list. Instead, the piece focuses on the musical history of Vienna, a central aspect of its culture and identity. 

1 oz Austrian Gold Philharmonic Coin Obverse
1 oz Austrian Philharmonic

On its obverse, you’ll note a beautiful and intricately detailed depiction of the Musikverein organ, one of the world’s largest musical instruments and a cultural landmark in Austria. The reverse of the Austrian Philharmonic shows off eight musical instruments, invoking the unique imagery of the Vienna orchestra. 

Considerations for Buying Gold Coins

Before you decide to invest in one of the best gold coins to buy, it’s important that you do your research. There are three main things we think all investors should consider before purchasing gold bullion coins: pricing and premiums, authenticity and certification, and resale potential. By carefully researching these three factors, you can improve your odds of getting a fair deal on one of the market’s best gold coins to buy. 

Pricing and Premiums

Premiums are a frustrating reality in the bullion industry. New investors often want to know how premium costs will influence the total price of their gold coin, bar, or round. Every gold product will come with at least some premium, which is an additional cost over the melt value of your item. Some products, including gold bars and rounds, are likely to come with lower premiums – which means you pay less for your gold. 

Gold coins come with high premiums. Because of their cost of production and the sovereign governments that back their minting, gold coins are likely always going to cost a bit more than gold bars of a similar weight. Researching premium costs and shopping around at different dealers and marketplaces can help you save money on your investment. 

Authenticity and Certification 

The authenticity of your gold coin is an extremely important consideration. Even experienced bullion buyers sometimes struggle to verify the legitimacy of their gold coins. We recommend that new collectors consult professional coin grading organizations if they have any concerns about the genuineness of their gold coins. 

You can also take steps to evaluate your coins for legitimacy and condition at home. Take a look at some of the online resources available to you to get a better understanding of how to adequately check the legitimacy of a gold coin.


Market Liquidity and Resale Potential

Which gold coin is easiest to sell? For smart investors, this is an important question. Determining the future resale potential of your gold coin is essential as you look for the best gold coins to buy for your portfolio. We always recommend that investors track auction sale prices over time to identify how the coins they like have performed over the course of decades. Coins that seem to skyrocket in price after initial release will always be quality investments. 

Liquidity is also an important consideration, especially for investors who aren’t quite sure about their time horizon. How easily will you be able to sell your coin in the future? 

Final Thoughts: What are the Best Gold Coins to Buy?

With so many gold coins on the market, it can be difficult to figure out which products are the best gold coins to buy. We’ve got you covered. Hero Bullion sells some of the most popular gold coins in the world, and we’re confident that we have something for every collector to enjoy. 

If you have any questions about the investment process or picking out the right gold coins for you, please feel free to contact our customer service team. 

About The Author

Michael Roets is a writer and journalist for Hero Bullion. His work explores precious metals news, guides, and commentary.