Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank, Corfu
The Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank is located on the island of Corfu in the Ionian Sea. It is rightly considered one of the most important museums of its kind in Greece, featuring a collection that spans the entire numismatic history of modern Greece since the establishment of the modern Greek state in 1830. 180 years of history are covered over the 2 floors of a museum that annually attracts more than 8,000 visitors from all over the globe.
Permanent collections spanning 180 years of history
The 4 rooms of the Museum’s 1st floor house its permanent exhibition. Exhibits include banknotes, coin notes and other relevant material spanning the entire history of modern Greece.
The 2nd floor houses a permanent installation of the Coin-o-rama multimedia application. The application was developed by the Institute of Computer Science (ICS), Foundation for Research and Technology – Hellas (FORTH). Coin-o-rama is an interactive digital exhibition presenting all the coins issued by the modern Greek state (i.e. after 1830).
Cultural events and participation in local traditions
The Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank has been a member of the Association of European Printing Museums (ΑΕΡΜ) since 2016.
The 2nd floor houses temporary exhibitions, congresses, day conferences, seminars and workshops. On 18 May, the museum celebrates the International Museum Day with activities relevant to each year’s agenda.
Its central location at the very heart of the city of Corfu makes it an active part of the island’s cultural life and traditions.
On Holy Saturday morning, after the First Resurrection of Jesus is first, the museum observes the custom known as the botides. These quaintly named clay pots are filled with water and thrown from the balconies of buildings in the centre of town – and from the 2nd floor of the museum – to bring luck to the throwers and bystanders.
Educational activities and programmes
The “Paper Money – The Greek Banknote” programme for primary and junior high school students is run at the space housing the permanent exhibition.
The Museum also organises recurrent educational activities, such as children’s painting competitions.
1840 – Original bank branch
On 2 March 1840 Ionian Bank opened its 1st central branch on Corfu at Sterna Square, also known as Del Banco Square (present-day Agiou Spyridonos Square).
1844 – Construction of the 2-storey building
Ionian Bank bought the land from the government and commissioned Ioannis Chronis – a leading architect at the time – to design the building and oversee the construction. Construction work was completed 1-2 years later.
With its Ionic half-columns and ancient-temple-style frieze, this building certainly stood out among the rest. The ground floor housed the first ever branch of Ionian Bank, while the 1st floor served as the branch director’s residence.
1981 – Museum opening
The Banknote Museum opened its doors to the public.
2004 – Refurbishment and restoration work
Alpha Bank refurbished the building and restored it to its present form.
Present day – An attraction visited by thousands
To this very day, the Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank is still housed in the same listed building.
Every year, about 8,000 visitors from all over the globe walk through its doors.
A wheelchair lift is available.
The museum implements all applicable protection measures against the COVID-19 pandemic.
View the visiting hours of the Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank.
News and activities of Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank
Renato Mordo Exhibition at the Banknote Museum
An exhibition honouring the life and work of this great man of the theatre at the Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank on the island of Corfu.
Banknote Museum activity review, 2022-2023
The educational activities at the Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank on Corfu were successfully completed for the 2022-2023 school year.
The Banknote Museum participated in the International Museum Day
The Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank on Corfu hosted an event on “Coins and Biodiversity – Museum and the Environment”.
“Coins and Biodiversity – Museum and the Environment”
The Banknote Museum of Ionian Bank on Corfu is hosting an educational initiative to celebrate the International Museum Day.