Antwerp Centraal Station, located in Belgium, is an opulent neo-Baroque station, completed in 1905. King Leopold II spared no expense in building the Antwerp Centraal Station, which contains more than 20 types of marble and stone and features a handsome antique clock and an iron and glass vaulted ceiling.
St. Pancras International Station in London took 20 years to build and was completed in 1868. The red brick Gothic façade remains a testament to England’s great Victorian architecture, even surviving the Blitz during WWII. It was the largest enclosed space in the world boasting huge halls, many shops, restaurants and bars, including Searcys Champagne bar.
Grand Central Terminal, completed in 1913, is the world’s largest station with tennis courts upstairs and a food court on the lower level. In the main concourse, a celestial ceiling mural hovers above the antique gold-barred ticket windows and magnificent gold chandeliers proudly display naked bulbs. Grand Central is full of secrets, such as the Whispering Gallery, which carries sound across the Guastavino-tiled arches.
Gare Du Nord, located in Paris, is constructed in the Beaux-Arts style. On the façade, statues personify some major European cities. During the daytime, the sun’s rays flood in through the arched windows and skylights, bathing the station in light. With over 190 million people passing through every year, Gare du Nord is Europe’s busiest railway station.
The beautiful CMF Railway Station in Maputo, the capital of Mozambique, is a splendid remnant of Portuguese colonial rule. The white and mint green building with its central dome resembles the work of Gustave Eiffel. A visit to the station feels like taking a trip back in time, as it still has old wooden benches, ticket counters, and antique steam locomotives on display.
Kuala Lumpur Railway Station in Malaysia was designed under British colonial rule and completed in 1910. It’s notable for its gleaming white architecture, which blends Eastern and Western designs, forming an eclectic mix. Originally the city’s main railway hub, today it serves commuter trains.
Estacion De Madrid Atocha was Madrid’s first and largest train station, originally inaugurated in 1851. It’s a glorious, wrought iron station designed by Alberto de Palacio Elissagne with a lush tropical garden growing in the main concourse. Don’t forget to visit the memorial commemorating the victims of the 2004 terrorist bombing inside the station.
The historic Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, completed in 1888, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and was a symbol of Bombay’s prestige. It was originally designed to honor Queen Victoria, Empress of India. Inspired by St. Pancras as well as Indian palace architecture, it’s a fusion of Western and Eastern styles. Indian craftsmen sculpted lion representing England and tiger symbolizing India.
The palatial Haydarpasa Terminal, perched on the banks of the Bosphorus in the Kadıköy neighborhood, was completed in 1909. The station looks European for a reason—the Anatolian Railway brought on German architects Otto Ritter and Helmut Conu, who employed German and Italian stonemasons to sculpt the impressive building.
A masterpiece of Beaux-Arts architecture, Union Station set the precedent for Washington D.C.’s major monuments, including the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, the Federal Triangle, the Supreme Court Building, and the National Gallery of Art. In the main hall, the barrel vaulted, white-coffered ceiling makes quite an impression. Outside, the stone façade with its rows of columns and statues looks straight onto the Capitol.
The grandiose Milano Centrale station was officially inaugurated in 1931, replacing two previous ones. Its design was modeled on Union Station, but became more ambitious and complex under Mussolini. Several architectural styles—mostly Art Deco and Liberty—combine to form the stunning station, which boasts 11,000 cubic meters of marble.
Built in 1906 in a Flemish Renaissance style, the picturesque Dunedin Railway Station earned its architect George Troup the nickname “Gingerbread George” and a knighthood from the king. Created by dark basalt combined with white Oamaru stone and pink granite, the station is home to the Sports Hall of Fame, New Zealand’s only sports museum.