New :

MÄRKLIN & RAILROADS : A personal view by Christian Vinaa

New :

  • Scale and size
    • 5", 1, LGB, H0, TT, N, Z

  • Electricity - Electronics
    • Turnouts
    • Signals
    • Light barrier

  • Real trains ( scale 1:1 )
    • Real trains - scale 1:1
    • Selection of train videos

Exhibitions :
International Toy Fair
in Nuremberg

Spielwarenmesse Nurnberg logo
Logo : © Spielwarenmesse

Spielwarenmesse NürnbergUpdated February 2017

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POI - Points Of Interest - Please download my kmz-file ( Google Earth kmz-file ) for Nürnberg.
( Latest version: 2017-01 )

My own personal impressions and comments with my own photos :
  • Spielwarenmesse 2014
  • Spielwarenmesse 2016
  • Spielwarenmesse 2017 ← new

On this page :
Where - When - What - What to expect - Hotels - Transportation
Model railroad stores - Other things to see around Nürnberg

Where ?

Europe - Germany - Bayern - Nürnberg - Exhibiton Center Nuremberg.

When ?

Every year in the end of January. 5 days fair from Wednesday to Sunday.
( used to be till Monday - 6 days ) starting with the last Wednesday in January.

What ?

5-day TRADE fair ( Wednesday - Sunday ) arranged by Exhibiton Center Nuremberg

The fair is NOT open to the public. You must either get an invitation, or, if you can prove that you have some connection with the toy industri, you are allowed to buy tickets.

The Nürnberg Toy Fair is THE biggest toy trade fair in the world.

Manufacturers from all over the world (literally) come to Nürnberg for the Toy Fair.

What to expect ?

The Exhibiton Center Nuremberg is huge :

toy trade fair nurnberg plan

but the model railroad manufacturers are ONLY in hall 4a. In 2017 only part of hall 4a.

All the other halls are reserved for other product-lines; dolls, R/C-cars, R/C-planes, halloween custumes etc. etc. etc.

You should treat yourself to visit the fair just once in your life; - if not else, then to be able to say : YES - I have been there.

All hobby-magazines bring extensive reports from the Toy Fair.

The various manufacturers typically present their new items on this fair.

The history of model railroad is full of examples of items being launched as big surprises at the Nürnberg Toy Fair.

The biggest perhaps was in 1972, when Märklin introduced the "z"-scale.

Of course, now in the age of Facebook and Twitter, manufacturers are "revealing" and launching "teasers" on the internet, so the surprise element of the fair is gone.

I visited the Nürnberg Toy Fair for the first time in January 2014, and was very impressed.

I also felt the history of the fair, having read reports from the fair in magazines like MIBA all the way back from the 1960ties. But now I was there myself - actually.

People who had been there for many years told me that the model railroad community used to take up much more space at the fair. Now model railroads are in one of the smaller halls; 4a.


Better be warned.

Hotels in Nürnberg seem to survive ONLY because of the Trade Fair. Prices are VERY high. Expect all rates to be AT LEAST doubled if not tripled; - even low-budget hotels will at least double their price during the Toy Fair week.

Several hotels have also begun to ONLY accept reservations for the whole duration of the Fair. They will not accept booking of a room for "only" 2 nights.

In the years before 2017 the ticket for the fair, ( as a "KombiTicket" ), would give you un-limited travels with ALL public transport ➚ in the greater Nürnberg area - which was actually quite large.
Map pdf file

So you could choose a cheaper hotel outside Nürnberg city and use the regio-trains to get to the fair.

However - in 2017 the Fair ticket only included transport within the Nürnberg / Fürth / Stein area. ( Zones 100 and 200 ).

So either you paid for an expensive hotel room or you paid for public transport or you got stuck in rush hour traffic.

Nürnberg and the Toy Fair really know how to make you feel welcome.

However there are claims that hotel prices are lower during the weekend - i.e. the last 2 days. The exhibitors will have to be there every day, but most visitors will be at the fair 1-3 days. People in whole-sale will likely be there on work-days ( Wednesday - Friday ) - while people in retail would choose to be there on Saturday / Sunday.


Nürnberg has an extensive public transport - trams - S Bahn - U-bahn and busses. DB Regio Trains covers the area very well.

The U-bahn ( U1 - U11 ) has a stop directly at the "Exhibiton Center Nuremberg". Just follow the signs "MESSE".

Nürnberg Airport ( NUE ) has a direct U-Bahn ( U2 ) connection to the Nürnberg Central Train Station ( "Hauptbahnhof - HBF" ) ( approx. 12 minutes ). Nürnberg Airport do not have many international flights, but there are several domestic flights.

Nürnberg Central Train station is wellconnected in the ICE network.

Model railroad stores

There are 4 model railroad stores in the Nürnberg area :
( Check my kmz-file - see above - for exact locations )

Eisenbahn DÖRFLER
Färberstr. 34/36
90402 Nürnberg
Easy to find in the "Altstadt". U-Bahn stations: "Weisser Turm" or "Opernhaus".
Big selection from all major model railroad manufacturers. Also some second hand items. Friendly staff. Very much worth a visit.

Modellbahn Ritzer
Kirchenweg 16
90419 Nürnberg
( Old address: Bucher Strasse 109, 90419 Nürnberg )
Typical old-style one-owner shop with many second-hand items. Many not-often seen second hand items.

Sigmund Modellbahnen - Gerald Keller
Schweiggerstrasse 5
90478 Nürnberg
Wonderfull old-style - and VERY small store. But the owner apparently knows exactly what is in store and what is not.

Müller Ltd. & Co. KG
Königstr. 26
90402 Nürnberg
Department store chain that actually has quite a lot of model railroad items - Märklin, Fleischmann, Busch, Faller - but the "low end" items ( i.e. Märklin "my world" and "Start Up" ) AND at full retail prices. No second-hand items and only rarely good offers.
Very central location next to U-bahn station "Lorenzkirche".

Other things to see around Nürnberg

There are many things to see in and around Nürnberg - just remember that the Toy Fair is in the end of January, which can make train-spotting and shopping very cold.

Copyright © Christian Vinaa
2014 -
"Märklin" and other brand names and product names and logo's
are ©, TM or registered trademarks of their respective owners,
and are used on this website for purely informational purposes.

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