Among the many fine sights to be seen while traveling by train, few are as pleasantly surprising as the terminals one passes through. Madrid's Atocha Station, a large building with wrought-iron design built in 1892, boasts a large tropical garden complete with palm trees and terrapins. It also has a nightclub for those who feel like strutting their stuff while waiting for the train. Shopaholics will appreciate Berlin's Hauptbahnhof, which has 80 stores that sell everything from flowers and fruit to jewelry and eyeglasses. And London's recently refurbished St. Pancras Internationalfeatures the longest champagne bar in Europe and a new farmers' market set to open this year.
The Lahore Railway Station in Pakistan provides an intriguing taste of the region's military history. Built during Britain's colonial rule, it functioned as both a fort and a train station. The two clock towers were designed to withstand bombs, and holes across the façade housed guns. In case of emergency, the train sheds can be easily sealed off.
Probably Africa's most beautiful terminus, Maputo's Central Railway Station in Mozambique was designed by Gustave Eiffel in 1910 to resemble a palace, with marble pillars and wrought iron detail.
Strikingly situated in one of Japan's most picturesque historic cities, the Kyoto Stationis a dazzling, futuristic maze of glass and steel that houses a shopping mall, a department store and a hotel. Check out the view of the city from the 12th floor. You'll feel as if you've truly arrived.
1. St. Pancras, London
2. Grand Central Terminal, New York
3. Chhatrapati Shivaji, Mumbai
4. Central Station, Antwerp, Belgium
5. Dare des Bénédictins, Limoges, France
6. Lahore Railway Station, Pakistan
7. Central Railway Station, Maputo, Mozambique
8. Hua Hin Railway Station, Thailand
9. Atocha Station, Madrid