Ratchadaphisek is north of Sukhumvit and is a busy commercial and entertainment district. Accommodation on Ratchadaphisek Road has great access to restaurants, malls and nightclubs. Lots of students, young Bangkok office workers and expat teachers call this part of the city home.
The subway (MRT) follows Ratchadaphisek Road, making it safe and easy to connect between shops, restaurants and hotels. The two major cultural attractions in the area are Siam Niramit and Thailand Cultural Center. These are great venues for first-time visitors to learn about Thai traditions and art, and the presentation includes enough excitement and special effects to interest children.
Hotels in Ratchadaphisek are large and especially popular with Chinese and Japanese tourists. Prices are affordable in Ratchadaphisek, and since guests have access to the subway they can easily connect to the Grand Palace or the Sukhumvit area easily.
Shopping centers including Lotus, Carrefour and Robinson are located next to the Cultural Center MRT station. The more affordable and more locally-flavored Jusco shopping center is also only a few steps from Thailand Cultural Center MRT. Esplanade is the most popular mall with younger people, featuring an ice-skating rink, cinema complex, mini skate park and several big-chain cafés and restaurants. Behind Esplanade is a dedicated nightclub zone with several large clubs that are busy every night of the week with Bangkok locals. Across the road are Ratchada Soi 4 and Soi 8 – both of which feature many large nightclubs, the most popular called Hollywood.
Ratchadaphisek covers a large area which is mostly residential and gives visitors to Bangkok a good idea about what life is like for locals. Since it's also where many expats find affordable accommodation there are plenty of facilities geared towards foreigners, with markets (Ratchada Soi 14), the vintage weekend market (Huay Kwang MRT), Esplanade and Robinson shopping complex presenting plenty to do.