If you’re looking for a model train show, I’m sure you’re a fan already. If you’ve stumbled onto this page by accident, take a look at our model train guide instead! It’ll get you up to speed before you visit one of these incredible shows.
Here, we are going to talk about displays and shows that every railroader should know about, or even try and visit in their lifetime.
Miniatur Wunderland is known as the world’s most extensive model railway system. It has also been voted as one of the most popular tourist spots in Germany. This popular tourist spot holds a Guinness World Record as well; It holds the record for the world’s longest model railway that is roughly 10 miles or 16 kilometers long! But it is more than a model railway exhibition – It is a tiny, intricately built world with snapshots of countries all over the world.
Miniatur Wunderland can be found situated in Northern Germany. It is centrally located in Hamburg’s Speicherstadt. The Wunderland is located in the historic famous warehouse district, right across from the harbor. The Speicherstadt lies in the heart of Hamburg, between the famous Elbphilharmonie and the town hall.
The Wunderland is open 365 days a year. Its opening hours are given below.
Sundays and holidays: Opens at 8:30 am and closes at 8:00 pm
Monday, Wednesday & Thursday: Opens at 9:30 am and closes at 6:00 pm
Tuesday: Opens at 9:30 am and closes at 9:00 pm
Friday: Opens at 9:30 am and closes at 7:00 pm
Saturday: Opens at 8:00 am and closes at 9:00 pm
The model railway consists of 15,715 meters of track in the H0 scale divided into nine sections. Its miniature world comprises 1000 square meters, and there are even more locations to follow.
It’s an absolute joy to visit, and something you should consider trying to make it to if you’re able!
Northlandz Miniature Train Display
Northlandz is a model railroad layout and museum, it’s truly an incredible model trains show In the Guinness Book of World’s Records, it was originally the largest railroad model in the world, consisting of over 8 miles of track (recently beaten by Miniatur Wunderland). This fantastic display of creativity has hundreds of tunnels canyons with a height of 3 and a half stories. This unique tourist attraction is entirely handicap accessible.
This amazing museum is in New Jersey, near Flemington. In this amazing complex, more than a hundred trains are passing through the miniature mountains, cities, rivers, etc.
The Northlandz has recently reopened after ten months and spending a quarter of a million dollars on renovations.
Now, this amazing museum and railroad will be open every day of the week from 10 am to 6 pm.
This complex comprises 52,000 square feet and 8 miles of miniature railroad having 400 bridges, 1000 buildings, and 25,000 trees. It has model trains in a range of different scales, from HO through to N.
LOXX Miniature World Berlin
The LOXX miniature world was a model railway exhibition. It was opened in 2003. It was the 3rd largest railway model in the world. The main focus of the large-scale complex was the models of Berlin buildings. Besides the Berlin stations, there were a lot of sights to enjoy.
However, we have to note that the complex was not a complete replica of the Berlin city center.
LOXX miniature world was stationed in Berlin, Germany. It was located on the 4th floor of a centrally located shopping mall. All of the central neighborhoods were represented on the model.
The LOXX Miniatur Welten Berlin has closed down on 31st August in the year 2017.
The LOXX miniature world Berlin comprises an area of 800 square meters. It included the Brandenburg Gate, Reichstag, the television tower in H0.
Pasadena Model Railroad Club
The Pasadena Model Railroad Club controls one of the largest H0 scale-operating models in the world, the Sierra Pacific Lanes.
It has been part of the model railroad community for more than 80 years. Trains from all eras including steam, diesel, freight, Amtrak, and passenger trains are operated. Model railroaders wait months to view this club’s awe-inspiring and detailed display of trains.
Even though PMRRM used to be located in Pasadena, hence the name, it is now located in Los Angeles, California.
The PMRRM meets twice a week, and their operating sessions are run thrice a month. Although, due to the COVID-19 situation, they had to postpone their last open house scheduled for 28th and 29th March 2020.
The PMRRM one of the biggest H0 scale railroad models in the world, Sierra Pacific Lanes, comprising 5000 square feet.
The Great Train Show
The Great Train Show is the only model train show in America going from one coast to another.
It has been managed by the Train Show Incorporated (TSI) since 2014, and they have been adding new venues to bring the show to even more places. The show is designed to promote train toys to enthusiasts no matter their age. In most of the shows, a train for kids is available that can amaze the kids with their vast operating layouts; this train ride is free for any child who comes to the show.
The show is hosted in Voinovich Livestock and Trade Center, located in Columbus, Ohio. The next shows on their schedule are on December 5-6, 2020, held at Montgomery County Fairgrounds, Dayton, and on December 12-13, 2020, held at Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis.
The show features a hall of 25,000-100,000 square feet with 150-500 tables of trains and toys for sale. It also features a substantial operating model railroad.
World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour
The WGH shows are hands-on, close up experiences. It displays the hobby of railroading across a multitude of model trains scales and train layouts. The world’s greatest hobby on tour is financed by the Hobby Manufacturer’s Association.
Its primary focus is to present the general public to model railroading in a lively, entertaining, family-friendly atmosphere.
The WGH shows are hosted in convention halls at various locations such as Columbus, Chantilly, Hampton, Saint Paul, etc. More than 200 booths of manufacturers and retailers are featured on the show.
The WGH show has been postponed until 2022 for various difficulties arising due to COVID-19.
The show is featured in an exhibit hall of 100,00 square feet and 50,000 square feet of enormous railroad models. Entry for children under the age of 16 is free.
The purpose of all these displays and shows is to raise enthusiasm about model trains in people of all ages and to keep promoting the hobby for the next generation.
Model railroading has a unique ability to bring people closer, and it is an excellent activity that can teach us many skills.
If you’re considering getting stuck into model trains after you’ve been to one of these shows, check out our guide to electric model trains here.
Peter has been building model trains for longer than he can remember. An avid fan of HO and O scale this blog is a creative outlet to allow him to dive further into other scales and aspects of the model train community and hobby.