ABOUT DYNAMIC EARTH
Dynamic Earth, home of the Big Nickel, is an immersive, hands-on science centre that features earth science and mining experiences. Complete with a guided underground tour, multimedia theatres, engaging exhibits, and an outdoor science park, this iconic space entertains visitors of all ages in an interactive and educational setting.
Sudbury’s iconic attraction, the Big Nickel, is an exact replica of the 1951 Canadian nickel. It was built in 1964 and symbolizes the wealth that Sudbury has contributed to the Canadian economy through nickel production. The base enables the public to walk around and under the 13,000-kg coin, with barrier-free access. The perfect place for a selfie!
Big Nickel Fast Facts:
- The Big Nickel is the largest coin in the world.
- In the 1960s, the Big Nickel was joined by four other over-sized monuments: The Fantasy Penny, The Lincoln Penny, The Kennedy Half Dollar and The Twenty Dollar Gold Piece. These other four monuments were all dismantled in 1984.
- The 1951 5-cent coin was minted to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the isolation and naming of the element Nickel.
- On the “heads” side is King George VI, and on the “tails,” a stylized nickel refinery with one large stack. However, it is not the Sudbury superstack!
- It is about 64,607,747 times the size of a real Canadian nickel.
- Since 1999, the composition of the 5-cent coin has changed to 94.5% steel, 3.5% copper, and only 2% nickel.
In the footsteps of Sudbury’s Miners
Put on a hard hat, as we descend seven storeys underground to walk in the footsteps of Sudbury's miners.
This guided tour takes you through our demonstration mine to discover the evolution of mining from turn-of-the-century to modern day.
Have a blast! Pick up your pass for the next available tour time as soon as you arrive! Be sure to purchase a postcard at the Sales Centre to mail in our Underground Postbox!
Tour lasts approximately 1-hour-15-minutes. Sturdy footwear and jackets are recommended, as mine temperatures are approximately 13°C (55°F).
Last tour of the day is scheduled for 1h30min prior to closing.
Seizure warning! Tour contains flashing lights.
Experience the greatest show on earth at the Earth Gallery—perfect for visitors of all ages who want to learn more about earth sciences.
Find out how to identify rocks, minerals and fossils, and bring in your own samples to trade at the Rockhound Lab. Investigate Earth processes, including earthquakes and plate tectonics, and find out how a large meteorite shaped Sudbury and the mining the community we see today.
Grab a snack, take your seat and enjoy films that are both fun and educational, all on the Epiroc Theatre’s giant screen.
Fascinating nature documentaries allow you to gain a better understanding of the world around us. Ask a Bluecoat for the day’s screening schedule when you arrive.
Ready to rock?
In the MacLeod Rock Gallery, you can test your skills in our Mine Training Centre while operating one of our exciting simulators. Join a rescue team for a mine rescue adventure. Create mountains and lakes with the new virtual sandbox and pan for REAL gold flakes in our gold panning table.
For a more relaxing visit, enjoy engaging multimedia experiences with Nickel City Stories or Rocks to Riches.
Located across from the Copper Café, the Mineral Wall is bursting with colours and textures from our natural world.
Explore, identify and learn all about the specimens with our interactive touchscreens. You won't be able to resist touching these rocks and minerals from around the world as they tell the Earth's geologic story.
In the shadow of the Big Nickel, visit Ontario's only outdoor Science Park. With large-scale, science-themed exhibits and interactive structures.
Fun for all ages, you get to:
- Slide down the large “molten slag” towards a real slag pot
- Get in the driver’s seat of a real Scooptram® underground loader
- Operate a digger in the Sand Pit Zone
- Create music with a rock xylophone
- And replicate the movement of a seismic wave
Weather permitting. Open from May to September.
Give a Gift
For the person who has everything – a valued employee or a special client you may be trying to impress – our gift cards make for a fantastic gift! Redeem them and discover all of the wonderfully unique experiences our science centres have to offer!
BIG NICKEL BOUTIQUE
Looking for a unique Sudbury shopping experience? Visit the Big Nickel Boutique to find locally produced and one-of-a-kind giftware, jewellery, clothing, novelties and more.
The Copper Café offers light snacks and beverages that can be enjoyed while overlooking Vale’s Copper Cliff Smelter operations and re-greening work.