When you think about it, train stations don’t have to be particularly beautiful or interesting places. They’re essentially functional buildings designed with the sole purpose of getting you from one place to another. Sure, it’s nice if they’re comfortable and well-equipped, but any more than that feels like a bit of a bonus.
But plenty of train stations are much, much more than mere transport hubs. Some, in fact, look damn fine. Over the past two-and-a-bit centuries, rail stations have produced some of the world’s most iconic pieces of civic design, from mighty monuments and modern art pieces to literal palaces and cathedrals dedicated to train power.
More than anything, the world’s greatest train stations are proof that there’s no reason why practical infrastructure can’t also be visually stunning – or even a destination in itself. Don’t believe us? Across eras, styles, movements and continents, here are 15 train stations around the world that are really, totally spectacular. You won’t look at your dingy old local station the same way again...
🚞 The best train journeys in the world
🚂 The most scenic railway journeys in Europe
🎩 The world’s most luxurious train rides