Train Fetish: Railway Stations and Museums in Budapest
I was just reading about the extraordinary world of train fetishism, brought to perfection in Japan (of course! I love the Shinkansen, too!) and will never again be able to enter a tunnel on a train without ‘second’ thoughts.
I was wondering if the infatuation with beautiful railway stations marks the beginning of a train fetish? It could do. And I wouldn’t be the least surprised if Budapest is to blame.
The railway and metro stations have a long history here and are worth a visit, no matter if you will be boarding the train or not.
We didn’t use the train but marvelled at huge halls with interior design from the end of the 19th century, nothing short of aristocratic ball rooms.
This is not a palace. This is Nyugati Train Station.
It is a luxury to be surrounded by the beauty of those sophisticated places for the common public. A testament of the wealth and importance of Budapest as the strategic city of the Austro-Hungarian Empire it once was.
Queueing is appreciated.
This is not a fancy restaurant, it is awful McDonald’s camouflaged by the beautiful interior of the train station.
Nyugati train station looks
Keleti Train Station is the main railway terminal for international connections in Budapest.
19th century architecture is magnificent and timeless. Even train stations, the living spaces of large and powerful machines are alluring. The plaque shows the transition from the past to the ‘present’. Trains and work conditions have changed but the station is the same.
After its completion it was Europe’s most advanced train station.
Lotz Hall at Keleti Train Station.
The Hungarian State Railway transformed into the MÁV Group and passenger transport is operated by MÁV-START Railway Passenger Transport Co. since 2007. This is the official website for train travel, timetables and tickets in Hungary: www.mav.hu (Their site is also in English. Phew.)
There are three main train stations in Budapest: Keleti Pályaudvar, Nyugati Pályaudvar and Déli Pályaudvar. The Budapest metro will stop at all of these.
MUSEUMS for TRAIN FANS
The Urban Public Transport Museum in 2000 Szentendre on Dózsa Gy. utca 3 and “offers an introduction about the development of the rail transport of the Hungarian capital and the large cities in the countryside as well as of BKV and its predecessors” – first paragraph out of their tourist brochure. If that sounds tempting to you, go loco for the locomotive.
“You can get acquainted with technical train equipment hardly visible in everyday travels… and spare parts” – please let me know if this experience is better than it sounds.
The Underground Railway Museum is conveniently located in the underground metro station of Deák Ferenc tér and “commemorates the first underground railway of the continent” according to the flyer I got at the museum. I am not sure if that is true. Apparently Athens green metro line opened in 1869 which would be earlier than Budapest’s, opening in 1896.
The metro in Budapest and its bond with the universe is something I truly enjoyed in Budapest but I cannot imagine anyone spending more than 15 minutes on the museum displays.
This is the website for the museums: www.bkv.hu
move ride on. See you in the next post.