Bookstores of Tryon North Carolina

Bookstores of Tryon North CarolinaThe Story

A few days ago my husband and I decided to visit Tryon North Carolina. To my surprise there are several bookstores in Tryon. So I decided to do a post on the bookstores of Tryon North Carolina. Tryon is a fairly small mountainous town. It is picturesque in its own way. I didn’t really get to explore all of Tryon, so I don’t know its history, but if you’re looking for a small town detour, Tryon is a good place to go.

I counted four bookstores in Tryon, I only got to go in two. There are two that I honestly had no idea what the hours were. It was a shame because one was an antiquarian bookstore, and those are awesome. There used to be an antiquarian bookstore in Dahlonega, Ga which was just awesome. I’m not going to complain too much about that though because now there is an awesome chocolate shop in its place.

The Stores

Bookstores of Tryon North CarolinaThe Book Shelf

Location: On the main street

The Book Shelf was one of the bookstores that was open when I was in Tryon. I did venture inside, unfortunately, I wasn’t feeling so awesome, so I didn’t get to browse this store to the extent that I should have. The Book Shelf mainly sells new books, that I could tell. The front shelf as soon as you walk in the store is composed of local authors. I hadn’t heard of any of them and I really would’ve have liked to pick up a book by a local author, but there just wasn’t anything that struck my fancy.

I did buy a book from The Book Shelf though. I bought a copy of Boone by Robert Morgan. I have already read Gap Creek by Robert Morgan, which is a well-written book and full of details about life in the Carolinas. Boone, is a biography about Daniel Boone, whom I am related to, so I bought the book. It will be interesting to see how someone who also writes fiction chooses to portray Daniel Boone.

Bookstores of Tryon North CarolinaThe Village Book Shoppe

Location: Maple Street

This was the second book shop in Tryon that I got to peruse, again, I wasn’t feeling too well, so it didn’t get the perusal it deserved. This book shop sells used books and there are quite a few. There are pictures of Thomas Wolfe, Carl Sandburg and a few other authors of the Carolinas throughout the shop. It’s a little dark inside, but it’s quite interesting. There are sections for both local authors and authors from the Carolinas. There were also some very interesting looking homesteading books near the front of the shop. There was a volume of poetry by Carl Sandburg I was eying up, but since I didn’t feel well, I didn’t pursue the book. That means I am going to have to go back sometime and check this shop out again.

Bookstores of Tryon North CarolinaNoah’s Ark Book Attic

Location: The main street

This is the antiquarian book shop which I did not get to go into. That is quite unfortunate. I don’t know about its business status, but I could see books and bookshelves through one of the doors. There were no hours listed for this book shop. I guess you show up when it’s open and if it’s not open, too bad. I really would have liked the chance to go into this bookshop to look around. I can’t really give a good review of the shop because I didn’t actually get to go in. Maybe when you go to Tryon, it will be open and you can tell me what it was like.


Bookstores of Tryon North CarolinaChristian Science Reading Room

Location: on the main street, right next door to Noah’s Ark Book Attic

This one I am not too enthused about, but I know there are people who would enjoy it. It seems to carry less volume than the other stores, but also included a free lending library as far as I could tell. It wasn’t open when I went, and, honestly, I probably wouldn’t have went in. I’m not really a Christiany-sciencey type of person.

Looking in through the window, it did seem that it was a possibility that you could go there and read for a while. There were chairs and it seemed like someone did take the time to set up a semi-comfortable environment.

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Bookstore: Books + Beans

Name: Books and Beans


9426 Hwy.226-A Little Switzerland, NC 28749

Hours: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm


How I found myself there: 

My husband and I decided to take a little vacation. We are used to meandering around when we want to get away. We lived in Okinawa for almost three years and explored quite a bit of the island. Now we live in the states. You can’t just take off driving in any direction in the states. You’re likely to end up in Texas or something if you do. We planned to take a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

The Blue Ridge Parkway stretches from the bottom of North Carolina to the top of Virginia. We didn’t go all the way, but we went quite a ways on the parkway.

One of the towns, or rather, blips in the map, off the parkway is called Little Switzerland. There is not much in Little Switzerland. There wasn’t even a gas station that I could recall. We were tired of being on the parkway. Unfortunately the day we decided to drive on the parkway was a day it was raining. When you get up high in the mountains there is a lot of fog and I am in no way exaggerating. We pulled off and found a place to stay. We stayed at a little place called The Alpine Inn. It’s on the side of a mountain. I’m sure the view would have been very beautiful had it not been so foggy we couldn’t see fifty feet ahead of our hands. After we checked into this little inn, we went to browse the whole ten feet of Little Switzerland. Ok, it’s a little bigger than that.

What we found was an amazing bookstore. The building that houses the bookstore is pretty old. There is a fireplace that is just awesome. The building is still broken up into rooms and that is really charming. It’s not one big room. You can walk all around. In each room there is something different. Each room is decorated in a really cozy manner. This store has thousands of books. They’re everywhere.

I especially liked that the cookbooks are clearly in what used to be a kitchen. When I saw this I knew that I had to take some pictures. Moira Hutchings the manager of this bookstore was kind enough to let me break my camera out.

The store holds an entire section of first edition novels. There are hardly any books in the store that are new. The only new books in the store are locally published books about the area. These are in the first room. Did I mention there is coffee and muffins and stuff? Yeah, this bookstore has that too. A large antique display case houses the muffins and brownies.

Books are just everywhere. I was happy with the first floor, but then I discovered there were books in the basement. As you walk down a wide old staircase into the basement books and a large black couch meet you. There are actually several spots where you can just sit down and peruse a book. I love how there were knick knacks everywhere. They really added to the character of the place.

If you ever find yourself in Little Switzerland, you need to stop at Books and Beans. You will seriously regret it if you don’t. I don’t know where else you can browse in such a unique environment. Sure there is Barnes and Noble, but those are new books only. This is a gem. These books have been held in many hands. These books have a life all their own. There is also a nice little restaurant next door.


yes, those are books under the stair