Grand Central Terminal is one of the great architectural achievements of New York City and is a must when you travel to NYC. This historic and world-famous landmark in Midtown New York is much more than one of the busiest train stations in the world – it’s also a shopping, dining, and cultural destination. Here you can truly admire the beautiful and lasting legacy of the terminal with its beautiful, vaulted ceiling made by the French artist Paul César Helleu, and marble floors and ticket counters.
Grand Central is the most visited place in the city after Times Square but also the largest train station in the world when counting the number of platforms.
The biggest train station in the world
The 100-year-old Grand Central Terminal is one of the most iconic architectural achievements of New York City and also one of the most visited places in the city. Around 750 000 people pass through Grand Central every day and is the most visited place in New York after Times Square. Grand Central Terminal is the largest train station in the world with its 44 platforms and 67 train tracks. Here you can take the subway, Metro-North, and Long Island Railroad.
On February 2nd, 1913, was the opening day for the newly constructed Grand Central Terminal. Rumors say that 150 000 people visited the train station that day. It took around 10 years to build Grand Central to replace the old train station that was built by Cornelius Vanderbilt.
The Main Concourse ceiling
The ceiling in the Main Concourse is one of Grand Central’s most recognizable features. This beautiful, vaulted ceiling was designed by the French painter and artist Paul César Helleu. What most people don’t think about is that the sky and zodiac in the ceiling are painted backward. Rumors say that Helleu did that on purpose. The zodiac was intended to be viewed from gods perspective, rather than a human one, looking down from above, not up. Maybe this was just a way for them to avoid admitting an error, who knows!
The information booth clock
This clock is the crown jewel of Grand Central Terminal and is located in them middle of Main Concourse. It’s a common that people say “lets meet at the clock” when meeting up at the terminal. This clock is valued to be worth $10-20 million.
More than just a train station
Grand Central Terminal is much more than one of the busiest train stations in the world – it’s also a shopping, dining, and cultural destination.
Restaurants at Grand Central
Many people visit Grand Central for its selection of restaurants. Under the Main Concourse is the popular Dining Concourse where you can eat everything from burgers to salads. This is where you can find the famous Oyster Bar and Restaurant which opened in 1913, the same year Grand Central opened. Grand Central has many more great spots to grab something to eat like bagels, pizza, Luke’s Lobster, and Magnolian Bakery.
Shopping at Grand Central
There are many great stores inside Grand Central Terminal. If you head to the Main Concourse and walk up the stairs to the East Balcony you can visit the Apple Store. Grand Central also has stores like Warby Parker, Banana Republic, Lululemon and Swatch.
A fun thing to try at Grand Central is to visit the Whispering Gallery. Head to the lower floor where all the restaurants are and find the vaults next to the Oyster bar. They are built in a way to make voices and sounds much stronger than they are.
You need to be two people to get the full effect. Two people has to stand at opposite corners of the vaulted archways to communicate. Your voice will travel to the other side loud and clear almost like you’re standing next to each other.
Guided tour of Grand Central
Book a guided tour to uncover a side of Grand Central that most visitors never experience. With this tour you get to discover secret staircases, explore a onetime movie theater, and step back in time on a visit to a 1920s speakeasy.
Grand Central Holiday Fair
Grand Central has a Christmas market called The Grand Central Holiday Fair during the Christmas season. It runs for around six weeks and has 40 local artisan vendors offering unique and handmade products like Christmas decor, jewelry, toys, and jewelry.
Grand Central in movies and tv shows
You will probably recognize Grand Central from one of many movies this beautiful train station is featured in such as Gossip Girl, The Avengers, Glee, Friends with benefits, I am Legend, Superman, North by northwest, Just my luck, Hawkeye and Men in Black.
How to get to Grand Central
Grand Central Terminal is located on 42nd Street and Park Avenue. They are open every day between 5.30 am to 02.00 am.
To get there you can take the subway lines S, 7, 4, 5, 6 to the subway stop called Grand Central-42 St.