Right in the heart of Manhattan, the Grand Central Terminal has a truly appropriate name. Although sometimes referred to as Grand Central Station, it really is a terminal since all train lines terminate or originate here. As so many other things in New York, the size of the Grand Central is the first thing to note. Entering through one of the side entrances, it is easy to walk for a long time without any train in sight. Restaurants, shopping malls, all clean and seemingly new, after the restoration works in the 1990s.
The Grand Central Terminal was built in 1913, in the golden age of railways and way before airline travel overtook railways as the main means of transportation. Although unfortunately the outside of the station was completely covered when I last visited, the grandness of the design can still be appreciated from hints sticking through the scaffolding. It overpowers you once you step inside. This railway station is in fact so big that there are actually tours to give visitors a guided impression of its grandeur.
While the concourses, the lower levels, the entrances are all impressive in themselves, the real heart of the building is the main hall. This is the pulsating centre of Grand Central Terminal. It is here that you will see passengers waiting in line to buy their tickets, consulting the information signs for departure times, waving goodbye to loved ones, hurrying to their trains on tracks that are largely hidden behind doors. It is also here that you will feel small when you look up at the blue-greenish ceiling, representing an evening sky with gilded stars and constellations. The literal centre pieces of the hall is the four-sided clock above the information booth, a landmark in itself and an easy meeting point.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Grand Central Terminal (U.S.A.). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Grand Central Terminal.
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