Home to some of the swankiest hotels in the city, much of Bang Rak is also about the Chao Phraya River, where one can still experience why Bangkok was known as the Venice of the East, with plenty of fine dining and romantic spots to spend lazy time watching the sun set and river meander by. Bang Rak can be divided into four centers, each with its own BTS station and its own distinction.
At Sala Daeng station, between Silom road and Rama 4, you will find Si Lom, a busy center for shopping and dining, and is famous for Pat Pong, an area known for nightlife and its red light district. Patpong Night Market takes up central space in the Bang Rak district. While the infamous red light entertainment district of the same name is just behind it, Patpong now attracts a more family friendly crowd, as tourists flock here to check out the latest DVD’s, clothing, bags, and all sorts of gadgets from electronics to spyware. Just make sure that it is something that can go through Customs back home! It is well known for delicious street food, shopping malls and restaurants.
Si Lom is next to Lumphini Park, the green lounge of Bangkok. It also a neighborhood with plenty of people yet with a relaxed atmosphere. It separates the tranquility of the Lumpini Park and the busy corporate and banking district of Bangkok. Rama 4 is another busy road that runs all the way down to Hua Lampong, Bangkok’s old Main Train station, bordering to Chinatown in the west.
Chong Nonsi is the Manhattan of Bangkok with its towering skyscrapers housing the main business and banking centers. Sathorn Road separates Bang Rak and Sathorn and is one of the main roads in and out of the city.
At Surasak the business area continues on one side of the road while a quieter residential area makes up the rest along Rama 4 road.
Around Saphan Thaksin you will truly feel like you are in Venice of the East while enjoying a sumptuous meal along the Chao Phraya. Some of the city’s most atmospheric restaurants are here, such as the Mandarin Oriental’s Sala Rim Naam, where traditional Thai dancers perform as you eat royal Thai cuisine or in Le Normandie, where you can watch the river flow by while enjoying some of the kingdom’s best French gastronomy, or jump on a boat and enjoy the river scenery from the water. The historical landmarks still reminds you of the days of early trade with the west and the east. The mixture of Chinese immigrants and western colonialism blends into a natural charm found nowhere else than Charoen Krung.
Bang Rak has a lot to offer. Never a boring moment.