Visit the Bank of Canada to check out some unusual currency
- Ottawa Travel Guide
- Wednesday, 14 March 2012 09:33
Not everyone who visits Canada's capital city will know that there are some interesting things to see and do inside the Bank of Canada. This facility is one of the largest banks in the city, but it is also home to several unique exhibits and a Currency Museum that welcomes thousands of guests every year.
One of the most interesting pieces that savvy travellers may spot inside is a massive circular stone with a hole in it, mounted on a pedestal. This piece was actually used centuries ago on the island of Yap in the South Pacific. The stone measures more than 2 metres wide and weighs roughly 3 tonnes so how island inhabitants used the massive rock to trade remains a mystery. The display is also surrounded by a charming indoor garden that may be perfect for a stroll to see some indigenous flora and fauna.
After gazing upon the giant Yap stone, travellers can head into the Currency Museum to see more examples of fascinating coins, paper notes and more collected by the bank. Some of the permanent displays include a deck of cards used for trade in France when money was low, and pieces of wampum that were legal tender in British North American colonies until the late 1600s.
The museum is always updating and changing its exhibits, so no two visits may be exactly the same. For instance, through April 8 the facility will be featuring a special presentation on the importance of the credit card through modern history. The idea of using cards as currency is not new, but technology has continued to evolve the industry, making it the staple that it is today. Guests may see examples of credit cards on display at the museum, some dating back more than five decades.
Another exhibit this spring will be the counterfeiting audio tour available to visitors who wish to learn about the history of deceit and forgery when it comes to currencies throughout the world.
Travellers can visit the bank and the museum for free from Tuesday to Sunday. There are so many exhibits and displays that guests of all ages are sure to have a great time during their encounter with currency. Tours of Ottawa can be made more fun with a trip to the city's bank while on holiday.