Bustling Sukhumvit is a commercial and entertainment boulevard that cuts through the heart of Bangkok. It’s where animated nightlife districts sit near modern shopping malls, and pristine parks lie next to open-air markets and museums. The attractions line either side of the boulevard and its adjoining side streets, called sois. The entire Sukhumvit Road stretches from Siam Square to Trat, a city close to the Cambodian border.
The boulevard is a shopper’s paradise with contemporary malls, independent boutiques, luxury fashion outlets and street markets. Browse the pavement stalls for everything from Thai boxing apparel to leather goods, jewelry and tailored suits. Be ready to bargain with the hawkers, who often quote inflated prices. Enjoy less chaotic retail therapy at malls such as Emporium and Terminal 21.
Learn about Thai culture at museums and cultural centers. Step inside a century-old teakwood house at the Kamthieng House Museum. Discover the history of Thai medicine at the Museum of Thai Pharmacy. Spot colorful marine life, stargaze and try interactive science exhibits at the National Science Centre for Education.
Escape the constant bustle and find a moment of tranquility in one of the boulevard’s parks. Check out the ornamental ponds and sculpture collection at Bencahsiri Park. Admire the trees and fountains of Chuvit Garden, a park once owned by a controversial massage parlor tycoon. Follow walking trails around the flower-filled Benjakiti Park.
Food and nightlife are another highlight of Sukhumvit’s attractions. Wander through the lanes of Soi Cowboy and Nana Plaza for a glimpse into Bangkok’s notorious cabaret bars. Sample typical Thai street food, such as khao soi (curry and coconut noodle soup), at Soi 38. Go bar-hopping at Soi 11 and mix shopping with entertainment at Siam Square.
Getting around Sukhumvit is made easy via Bangkok’s sky train, which has stations at regular intervals. The most convenient metro station is Sukhumvit MRT. Buses also travel along the boulevard, although heavy traffic can create long delays. Alternatively, catch a boat on Saen Saeb canal, which frames the boulevard’s northern sois.