Most tourists will overlook these two neighborhoods stopping either in Pathumwan's Siam Square before arriving here or continuing through north, perhaps on the Skytrain, to Mo Chit Station near the Chatuchak Market. But young Thais in the know and a few fortunate foreigners have started to patronize the area's various shopping areas, restaurants and bars.

Phaya Thai was once centered around the road of the same name, but when Ratchatewi was carved out as a separate district, the road ended up going with it. Much of Phaya Thai in the east is occupied by the facilities of the Royal Thai Army, while Mahidol University sprawls between the two districts which draws the sorts of shops and eateries that serve students. Victory Monument, a historic landmark, lies to the east alongside the Skytrain line. This is a good place to escape the beaten path and find delicious, cheap restaurants, cheaper shopping and low-key nightlife, especially the hip, laid back Saxophone Pub.

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