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World's most stunning railway stations

Last updated on: December 14, 2011 09:30 IST

World's most stunning railway stations

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These swanky railway stations are a traveller's delight. We take you on a tour across some of the world's most beautiful railway stations...

Berlin Hauptbahnhof (Germany)

Berlin Hauptbahnhof (Berlin Central Station) is one of the biggest and most beautiful railway stations in Europe.

An architectural wonder, it is Europe's largest two-level railway station with 14 platforms and 80 retail stores. It was inaugurated on May 26, 2006.

Located on the site of the historic Lehrter Bahnhof, the station is operated by DB Station & Service, a subsidiary of Deutsche Bahn AG.

Classified as a Category 1 station, it is one of twenty stations in Germany and third in Berlin.

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Image: Berlin Hauptbahnhof station.


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Kuala Lumpur Railway Station (Malaysia)

A historical building, the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station with Moorish architecture design was completed in 1910.

A hub for Malaysia's rail transportation system, its tall minarets and arches make it one of the most impressive railway stations in the world.

The building was refurbished in 1986 with facilities like air conditioned waiting halls, stalls and information counters.

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Image: Kuala Lumpur Railway Station.

Tags: Malaysia

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Nordpark Cable Railway (Austria)

Zaha Hadid Architects built the Nordpark Cable Railway in 2005. The Nordpark Cable Railway has four new stations and a cable-stayed suspension bridge over the river Inn.

The station opened in December 2007. It was awarded the Gold Medal for design by the International Olympic Committee in 2005.

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Image: Nordpark Cable Railway.


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Gare de Strasbourg (France)

Designed by Berlin-based architect Johann Jacobsthal, in 1883 the railway station in Strasbourg, France, was renovated in 2007.

The 120-metre-long glass construction blends with the historic design of the train station. The 25-metre space between the dome and the building is another big highlight.

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Image: Gare de Strasbourg.


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Kanazawa Station (Japan)

It is one of the most futuristic and unique stations in Japan.

The station is a perfect blend of traditional and contemporary architecture. The wooden temple gate with glass and steel, is on the West Japan Railway's Hokuriku Line.

A 14-metre high gate leads to the station's main entrance. The giant dome which connects the west and east side of the station is made of 3,000 glass panes.

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Image: Kanazawa Station.


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Southern Cross Station

Southern Cross is a major railway station and transport hub in Australia. Southern Cross was revamped by the Civic Nexus consortium, with an innovative design by Grimshaw Architects, which features an undulating roof.

It is located on Spencer Street between Collins and La Trobe Streets at the western edge of the central business district. It has many shops and food courts.

The third busiest railway station in Melbourne, it also has a coach terminal under the shopping complex, from which operates the Skybus Super Shuttle service to Melbourne Airport.

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Image: Southern Cross Station.


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Madrid Atocha (Spain)

This is the largest railway station in Madrid. Intercity and regional trains from the south, and the AVE high speed trains from Barcelona pass through this station.

Spanish architect Rafael Moneo created a beautiful garden in the station complex. It also has a nightclub.

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Image: Madrid Atocha.


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Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (India)

One of the most attractive buildings in India, the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus is located in Mumbai.

Built during the British era, it is a perfect blend of Victorian Gothic revival and traditional forms of Indian architecture.

Both suburban and long distance trains are operated from here. Opened in 1887, it is also headquarters of the Central Railways. UNESCO has listed it among the World Heritage sites

Designed by architect Frederick William Stevens, it took ten years to complete this landmark building. It was initially named Victoria Terminus in honour of Queen Victoria.

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Image: Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus.


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Antwerp Central Station (Belgium)

The Antwerp Central Station is one of the world's most impressive railway stations. The 'railway cathedral' was built between 1895 and 1905.

The railway complex is spread across over 400 metres (1300 ft), has two entrances, a historic domed building at the Astrid square and a modern atrium at the Kievit square.

A shopping centre and a diamond gallery with more than 30 diamond shops make it a shopper's paradise too.

While the main building was designed by architect L. Delacenserie, the huge glass vault is the creation of architect J Van Asperen.

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Image: Antwerp Central Station.


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St. Pancras Station (UK)

Designed by Gilbert Scott, St Pancras Station in London, is 243 feet wide and 600 feet long.

St Pancras International Railway Station is home to the Eurostar for services to Brussels and Paris. The station has Europe's longest champagne bar, shops, restaurants and cafes.

One of the greatest Victorian buildings in London, the station also offers a great shopping experience. It is also a perfect place for filming, photography and h The St Pancras Renaissance Hotel is hailed as London's most romantic building.

The glorious Gothic Revival metalwork, gold leaf ceilings, hand-stencilled wall designs and grand staircase are amazing.

It was designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott to receive travellers.

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Image: St. Pancras Station.


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The world's first metro system, London Underground opened in 1863. Today, there are 160 metro systems in the world.

Here's a look at some of the world's most beautiful metro stations...

Stockholm Metro (Sweden)

The Stockholm Metro is one of the most beautifully decorated stations. There are 100 stations on this route with a daily ridership of 1,122,000.

It was the idea of artists Vera Nilsson and Siri Derkert to use art to beautify the metro stations.

Today, besides holding art exhibitions, the works of more than 100 artists are showcased across 90 stations in the country.

The Metro began operations in 1950.

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Image: Stockholm Metro.


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Paris Metro, France

Paris has one of the densest metro networks in the world.

The network's sixteen lines are mostly underground and run up to a distance of 214 km. There are 300 stations on the route.

Paris has second busiest metro system in Europe. Designed by Hector Guimard, the Metro is famous for its architecture.

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Image: Paris Metro.


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Berlin-Spandau, Germany

Berlin-Spandau is situated in Spandau district. It replaced the historic Spandau railway station and is a regional and long-distance station for inter-city express trains arriving from Hamburg and Hannover

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Image: Berlin-Spandau.


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Kievskaya Metro, Russia

One of the most artistic stations in Moscow, Kievskaya station is the pride of the city's underground network.

Built in 1954, the station stands out in terms of its great design and beautiful art. The artwork is inspired from Ukrainian life and folk motifs.

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Image: Kievskaya Metro.


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Athens Metro, Greece

The Athens Metro is an underground rapid transit system owned by Attiko Metro.

The system serves 33 stations and has a daily ridership of more than one and a half million passengers daily.

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Image: Athens Metro.


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Komsomolskaya station, Russia

The Komsomolskaya station is one of the biggest attractions in Moscow.

Designed by Alexey Shchusev, frescoed ceilings, chandeliers and artwork gives the look of a museum.

The station is noted for its being located under the busiest Moscow transport hub, Komsomolskaya Square.

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Image: Komsomolskaya station.

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Saint Petersburg, Russia

Opened in November 15, 1955, Saint Petersburg Metro is one of the most elegant metro stations in the world with exquisite artwork.

It is one of the deepest subway systems in the world. The system's deepest station, Admiralteyskaya, is 105 metres below ground.

Serving nearly three million passengers daily, it is also the 13th busiest subway system in the world.

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Image: Saint Petersburg, Russia.


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Alisher Navoi Metro Station, Tashkent

Tashkent has very elegantly designed subway stations.

Each station is unique and has rich showcase of art and replication of folklore, making it one of the most beautiful subways in the world.

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Image: Alisher Navoi Metro Station.


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Dubai Metro

The Dubai Metro is a driverless, fully automated metro network in Dubai.

All trains and stations are air conditioned with platform edge doors.

The Dubai Metro carried 10 million passengers from its launch in September 2009 to February 2010 with 11 stations operational on the Red Line.

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Image: Dubai Metro.


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London Underground, UK

It is the world's oldest underground railway. The first section was opened in 1863. In 1890, it became the first station to operate electric trains.

The metro railway serves 270 stations and stretches across 402 kilometres making it the second largest metro system in the world in terms of route length.

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Image: London Underground.

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Frankfurt U-Bahn Metro, Germany

The U-Bahn, together with the S-Bahn form the backbone of the public transport system in Frankfurt.

Opened in 1968, U-Bahn consists of 87 stations on nine lines, which have a total length of 65 km.

About 59 per cent of the total track length is underground.

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Image: Frankfurt U-Bahn Metro.


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Porte Dauphine station, France

Designed by Hector Guimard, in the 'Art Nouveau' (New Art) style, the Dauphine Metro opened in December 1990. Porte Dauphine is a part of the Paris Metro network.

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Image: Porte Dauphine station.


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New York Subway, US

One of the oldest and most extensive public transportation systems in the world, the New York City Subway is a rapid transit system with 468 stations in operation.

The New York City Subway is the fourth busiest rapid transit rail system in the world in annual ridership.

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Image: New York Subway.


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Bilbao Metro, Spain

Bilbao is famous for its grand stations designed by Sir Norman Foster. Another interesting aspect is the use of energy from renewable sources.

Metro de Bilbao has installed brake energy recovery systems that stop the trains more effectively and get energy savings of 33 per cent.

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Image: Bilbao Metro.


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Ethniki Amyna, Greece

Ethniki Amyna is an Athens Metro Blue Line station. Ethniki Amyna metro station has entry-exit to Mesoggion Street.

It is close to the main entrance of the Ministry of National Defence (Pentagono).

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Image: Ethniki Amyna.


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Brussels Metro, Belgium

A rapid transit system serving a large part of Brussels, it has four metro line services. The metro has 49.9 km of network and 59 stations.

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Image: Brussels Metro.


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Washington Metro, United States

Opened in 1976, the Metro's network has grown to include five lines, 86 stations across 171.1 kilometres.

Metro is the second-busiest rapid transit system in the United States in number of passenger trips, after the New York City Subway.

Highlighting the late-20th century modern architecture, Metro stations were designed by Chicago architect Harry Weese.

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Image: Washington Metro.


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Budapest Metro, Hungary

The Budapest Metro is the second-oldest underground metro system in the world after the London Underground.

Its iconic Line 1, dating from 1896 was declared a World Heritage site in 2002.

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Image: Budapest Metro.


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Kazan Metro, Tartarstan

It is a rapid-transit system that serves the city of Kazan. Opened on 27 August 2005, it is the newest system in Tartarstan.

Kazan Metro is a single-line system that stretches nearly ten kilometres and has seven stations.

Like every other station in Russia, Kazan too has its own architectural theme.

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Image: Kazan Metro.


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Lisbon Metro, Portugal

Opened in December 1959, Lisbon Metro is the first subway system in Portugal.

There are four Lisbon subway lines across a distance of 39 kilometres with 52 stations

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Image: Lisbon Metro.


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