For the past year I’ve been compiling a list of model train stores for my model railroading website. These shops all look like a lot of fun to visit, but what are the most popular? Here is a list for the states of North Carolina and South Carolina.
The most popular model railroading shops (based on online chatter) in North Carolina and South Carolina are:
10. The Hobby House in Hendersonville, North Carolina
9. Todd’s Train Depot in Wendell, North Carolina
8. Little Choo Choo Shop in Spencer, North Carolina
7. Rail and Spike Trains in Easley, South Carolina
6. The Train Loft in Winston Salem, North Carolina
5. Factory Direct Trains in Asheville, North Carolina
4. Blue Ridge Hobbies in Greenville, South Carolina
3. Time Zone Hobbies and Toys in Aiken, South Carolina
2. Tom’s Train Station in Raleigh, North Carolina
…and the most popular shop for model trains in North Carolina or South Carolina is…
1. Greensboro Electric Trains in Greensboro, North Carolina
Hobby shops not quite making my top 10 were ABC RC Hobby in Forest City, North Carolina; Chuck’s Trains in Landis, North Carolina; Dry Bridge Station in Mount Airy, North Carolina; Hayes Hobby House in Fayetteville, North Carolina; Leland’s Toy Trains and Planes in Hildebran, North Carolina; Zoo Toys and Trains in Wilmington, North Carolina; Hobby Station in Bethune, South Carolina; New Brookland RR and Hobby in West Columbia, South Carolina; SVC Trains in Georgetown, South Carolina; and The Great Escape Bicycles and Hobby Shop in Spartanburg, Anderson, and Greenville, South Carolina;
So, there are clearly many great model railroading shops all over North Carolina and South Carolina, with North Carolina having seven in the top ten and South Carolina having three – but both states had two in the top four.
When in North Carolina and South Carolina be sure to visit some of the excellent railroading museums including North Carolina Railroad Museum in New Hill, North Carolina; North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer, North Carolina; Smoky Mountain Trains in Bryson City, North Carolina, Wilmington Railroad Museum in Wilmington, North Carolina; Lancaster and Chester Railway Museum in Lancaster, South Carolina; and South Carolina Railroad Museum in Winnsboro, South Carolina.
I compiled this list by searching for the hobby shops listed on a number of search engines and ranking them by the number of web pages, discussion forums, photos, videos, etc that are available online. I further screened this list to include only pages that mentioned model railroading.