Saturday Snapshots #56

GareDuNordParis © J Horak-Druiff 2009


Alone on the platform – Paris Gare Du Nord, 2007

If you have ever arrived in Paris on the Eurostar, you will be familiar with the huge Gare du Nord station.  This is where the Eurostar and Thalys trains arrive from the rest of Europe; where the TGV and SNCF trains arrive from the rest of France; and where the Metro and RER trains arrive from the rest of Paris.  Opened in 1846 and extensively remodeled and enlarged in 1861, it opened (largely) in its current form in 1864.  Its facade is designed around the idea of a triumphal arch and it is topped with 23 statues representing the cities that the station’s railway lines serve.

It is the second largest station in the world in terms of platform capacity (42 platforms to New York Grand Central Station’s 67).  It is also the busiest station in Europe and the third busiest in the world (after Japan’s Shinjuku and Ikebukuru), with 180 million travellers passing through it each year.  But on this particular summer afternoon, the total population of the platform was one and just for a moment the station seemed at peace.

Saturday Snapshots is a series of non-food photographs published every Saturday on CookSister. Previously featured photographs can be viewed on the Saturday Snapshots archive pages. Many photos featured in Saturday Snapshots are available to buy as high-quality greeting cards or prints in my RedBubble store, or even as high-quality A3-size calendars. If you want a custom calendar with your own selection of photos, starting with any month (not only January), please e-mail me and we can discuss your requirements.

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  1. says

    Oh, this brings back such wonderful memories. The first time I ever went to Paris, my daughter, husband and I took the train from Amsterdam, and of course, ended up at Gare du Nord. I think my first trip to Paris will always be the most special.