Where To Eat In Train Stations

Ditch the bar car and head to one of these quality in-house dining options instead

If you're a frequent train traveler, you're all too familiar with the same old fast-food chains and convenience store snacks scattered throughout nearly every stop. But if you know where to look, you can actually find some gems hidden inside train stations the world over, even including a Michelin-starred restaurant.

So it's high time you dropped that bag of Cheez-Its and lukewarm Diet Coke, and treated yourself to a real, honest-to-goodness meal.

Pennsylvania Station (New York City)

If you're grabbing a bite at New York's hectic Penn Station, odds are you're strapped for time and starving. For something a little more substantial than a granola bar and a Smartwater, order a slice at Rose's Pizza & Pasta or a sandwich at Au Bon Pain. And if somehow you managed to plan ahead and aren't in a rush, swing by Tracks Raw Bar & Grill or The Pennsy, a high-end food hall located right above the station, featuring restos from Mario Batali, Marc Forgione, Pat LaFrieda and the team behind The Cinnamon Snail.

Union Station (Washington, D.C.)

Among this historic station's fast-food chains and coffee shops, cult favorites Bojangles' Famous Chicken 'n Biscuits and Shake Shack are by far standout picks. Indulge in a Cajun Filet Biscuit combo or a juicy ShackBurger before boarding (or pack it for later).

Hong Kong Station (Hong Kong)

Treat yourself to Michelin-starred dim sum at Hong Kong Station's stunning Tim Ho Wan. There's usually a wait, so make sure to give yourself a little extra time, so you don't miss your train.

Tokyo Station (Tokyo)

When a station devotes an entire wing to ramen, it's basically your duty to have a bowl. Ramen Street is home to some of the city's best ramen shops, including Rokurinsha, responsible for making what chef David Chang proclaims is the "best ramen in the word." And if it's good enough for Chang, it's certainly worth a spot on your bucket list.

Union Station (Denver)

The Mile High City's central station's fast-food court is anything but typical. It counts restaurants owned by some of Denver's top chefs, like Jennifer Jasinski and Alex Seidel at Stoic & Genuine and Mercantile, among its offerings. Don't forget to treat yourself to an ice cream sundae or boozy shake after your meal at Milkbox Ice Creamery.

St Pancras International (London)

When a third of a station's yearly 50 million visitors make the trip for the food alone, you know they're doing something right. Prime Burger and Benugo are best for quick bites, but for a more upscale meal, grab a table at Searcys St Pancras Grand, which also has a separate Champagne bar.

Grand Central Terminal (New York)

Skip the dining concourse downstairs and head to Grand Central Market to pick up an assortment of cheese and meats from Murray's Cheese. And if time is on your side, there's nothing like a visit to the terminal's famous upscale Grand Central Oyster Bar.

30th Street Station (Philadelphia)

Truthfully, the food inside Philly's main station is nothing special. But if you're lucky enough to be passing through during the warmer months, be sure to check out the outdoor space next door, where The Porch hosts local food trucks for lunch Monday through Friday and the occasional breakfast service.

Union Station (Los Angeles)

California's Union Station has plenty of health options like Green Bowl 2go, but you should probably balance out your meal with a stop at the Ben & Jerry's counter. If you're up for a full dining experience, Traxx Restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, and has a pretty impressive bar menu.