Traveling to any new place begins with understanding the [public transport system of the area. Railways are the oldest means of transport for both, intra-city and inter-city transit. 

While most of these are designed purely from a functional perspective, listed below are the 15 most beautiful railway stations of the world- a must visit on your next vacation to these places.

1. St. Pancras International, UK

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St. Pancras Intl._©David Skinner

7 Things You Didn’t Know About St Pancras Railway Station (theculturetrip.com)

St. Pancras International is situated at the heart of Central London and has more underground railway connections as compared to any other London station. Today the station’s international aspirations have done wonders for the precinct it sits in, and it brings in a huge footfall for activities like eating, drinking and shopping apart from transit. The station is most famous for its elegant long-span and single-span roof of its train shed, which inspired New York’s Grand Central Station, as well as the beautiful Gothic revival hotel, originally called the Midland Grand Hotel, that’s adjacent to the southwest side of the station. 

2. Dunedin Station, New Zealand

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Dunedin Station_©macronix

Dunedin Railway Station | NZHistory, New Zealand history online

The Dunedin Railway Station is one of the city’s most significant architectural landmarks, and stands tall in the central city. Dating back to 1906, this majestic Flemish Renaissance-style edifice features white Oamaru limestone facings on black basalt rock, giving it a dynamic that resembles that of a ‘Gingerbread House’.

3. Milano Centrale, Italy

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Sirkeci Terminal_©ALAMY

What to do in Milan – Guide to an alternative weekend (thecrowdedplanet.com)

The terminus located at the northern end of central Milan is the main railway station of the city of Milan, Italy, and is the largest railway station in Europe by volume. Being the second largest rail station in Italy, Milan Centrale, is an important transit hub and its architecture is a true work of art. Since its opening in the early 1930s, the structure has been one of the top Milan attractions on its own, showcasing intricate facades with classic moldings and an arched roof top constructed with glass and steel.

4. Istanbul Sirkeci Terminal, Turkey

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Copyright credit: ©IMAGEBROKER / ALAMY

World’s Most Beautiful Train Stations | Travel + Leisure (travelandleisure.com)

Famous as the terminating point for the Orient Express, Sirkeci Station is also the terminating node of the European railway network leading into Istanbul, the two main lines from Thessaloniki, Greece, and Bucharest, Romania.  Sirkeci is one of the central travel hubs for Istanbul, connecting suburban train, tram, and ferry systems alike.

5. Luz Station, Brazil

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Luz Station_Source

Why Your Brazil Vacation Shouldn’t Skip Sao Paulo | Goway

A station built to serve as headquarters for British-owned Sao Paulo Railway, today houses a small but interesting museum known as Museu da Língua Portuguesa along with serving as a railway station for the people of Sao Paulo connecting one main line that joins Santos Harbour to Jundiaí.

6. Estación de Madrid Atocha, Madrid, Spain

Estación de Madrid Atocha, Madrid, Spain ©George Nutulescu//Flickr

Atocha | Madrid – Spain | George Nutulescu | Flickr

Madrid’s largest train station is known for its exceptional use of steel and glass in construction, along with the vivid tropical gardens that line its concourse. Additionally, commuters can enjoy viewing the permanent display of sculptures also found within the station.

7. Kuala Lumpur Railway Station, Malaysia

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Kuala Lampur Station_©ISTOCK

World’s Most Beautiful Train Stations | Travel + Leisure (travelandleisure.com)

Kuala Lumpur Railway Station is a fairytale Moorish-style building located to the southeast of the National Mosque. Situated along Jalan Sultan, it used to be KL’s main railway hub until 2001 when Kuala Lumpur Sentral took over its role.

8. Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, India

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Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, India ©Guidepal.com

Chhatrapati Shivaji (Victoria) Terminus (indiatimes.com)

Formerly known as Victoria Terminus in Mumbai, The Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus is a fine example of Victorian Gothic Revival architecture in India, with a blend of characteristics derived from Indian vernacular architecture. In 2004, UNESCO nominated this magnificent specimen of late 19th-century railway architecture as a World Heritage Site.

9. Hua Hin Station, Hua Hin, Thailand 

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Hua Hin Station

Hua Hin Railway Station – Most Attractive Train Station in Thailand | Thailand Cars Rentals

Built during the reign of King Rama VI, situated on a short distance from the town center, Hua Hin’s railway station and adjacent royal waiting room are undeniably aesthetic. The painted wooden buildings that are Thai in concept and design somehow still manage to have a ‘Victorian’ essence to them.

10. “End of The World Station”, Ushuaia, Argentina

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End of the World Station_©Daniel Garcaa Peris

10 Top Things to Do in Ushuaia (with Map & Photos) – Touropia

Formerly built to serve the prison of Ushuaia, the Southern Fuegian Railway is now a heritage railway in the Tierra del Fuego National Park, and its “End of the World Station” is known for its scenic views.

11. Kazansky Railway Station, Moscow, Russia

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Kazansky Station ©A.Savin (Wikimedia Commons · WikiPhotoSpace)

Moscow Kazansky railway station asv2019-06 – Moscow Kazansky railway station – Wikipedia

Kazansky railway station is one of nine railway stations, situated on Komsomolskaya Square. Kazansky station is a typical representative of Russian Revival architecture and is a complicated composition with disordered symmetry and intertwined architectural patterns.

12. Jungfraujoch Station, Switzerland

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Jungfraujoch Station

22 Of The Most Beautiful Train Stations Around the World | Travel.Earth – Page 14

At 3,454 meters (11,332 ft) above sea level, Jungfraujoch is an underground railway station situated below the Jungfraujoch col in the Bernese Oberland region of Switzerland. This is the highest railway station in Europe and is close to the summits of the Eiger, Jungfrau, and Mönch mountains.

13. Antwerp Centraal Station, Antwerp, Belgium

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Antwerp Station_©Alamy

The World’s Most Beautiful Train Stations | Architectural Digest

The Antwerp Central Station, also known as Spoorwegkathedraal (Railroad Cathedral), was first used in 1905. The structure is made from a steel platform covering and the stone station building designed in an eclectic style.  Recently, the station was completely renovated reverting the station’s status as a terminus.

14. Estação de São Bento, Porto, Portugal

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Estação de São Bento

Estação de São Bento no Porto: como visitar o cartão postal da cidade (eurodicas.com.br)

São Bento Train Station is located in central Porto is Portugal’s most beautiful train station with its mansard roof and Renaissance stone façade. The French-inspired architecture of the station’s construction is supplemented by the superb azulejos of Jorge Colaço (1869-1947), that depicts the history of transport in Portugal, the country’s landscapes, and defining historic moments including the Battle of Aljubarrota (1385) and the Battle of Arcos de Valdevez (1140).

15. Gare de Lyon, Paris, France

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©Wikimedia Commons

File:Gare de Lyon, Paris 12e (2).jpg – Wikimedia Commons

The station was constructed for the 1900 World Exposition. It is considered a classic example of the architecture of its time. Most significant is its large clock tower on top of one corner of the station, similar to the clock tower of the Palace of Westminster.

Sharvari Rajwaday
Author

Designing for change has always been an aspiration. This is me doing the same through words. My interests in the field include Research, Sustainable strategies and Urban design and hope to work on similar lines in the future.

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