Walk in Bangkok – Sukhumvit Road
Sukhumvit Road (ถนนสุขุมวิท), or Highway 3 (ทางหลวงแผ่นดินหมายเลข 3), is a major road in Thailand, and a major surface road of Bangkok and other cities. The road follows a coastal route from Bangkok to Khlong Yai District, Trat border to Koh Kong, Cambodia.
Sukhumvit Road is named after the fifth chief of the Department of Highways, Phra Bisal Sukhumvit.
It is one of the four major highways of Thailand, along with Phahonyothin Road (Highway 1), Mittraphap Road (Highway 2) and Phetkasem Road (Highway 4).
In the capital, Sukhumvit Road serves as a main commercial street, and this section is often congested, even at late evening or early morning hours. The Chalerm Mahanakhon Expressway has an exit at Soi 1. Ratchadaphisek Road crosses Sukhumvit at the Asok (Asoke) intersection.
The Sukhumvit area of Bangkok is easily accessible on the Skytrain Sukhumvit Line, which runs from Khu Khot in Lam Luk Ka, Pathum Thani through the Silom Line interchange at Siam up to Kheha in the centre of Samut Prakan.
The MRT’s Sukhumvit Station interchanges with the Skytrain at Asok. The Eastern portion of the Sukhumvit Line is built on top of Sukhumvit Road from Siam to Kheha station.
The sois are numbered from west to east, with odd numbers north and even numbers south of Sukhumvit Road. The sois on the north and south sides of Sukhumvit don’t line up; for example, Soi 33 is opposite Soi 24.
Confusing is that these sois also have names of their own (for example, Soi 55 is better known as Soi Thong Lo) and these sois can also have sois of their own (such as Thong Lo Soi 1).
The area between Sukhumvit Soi 1 and Sukhumvit Soi 63 is popular as residential area for western expatriates.
Looking at the high-rise apartment buildings, the Skytrain and the perennial traffic jam on Sukhumvit Road, it is hard to believe that this area used to consist of rice fields until World War II.
After the war, this area became developed with large contemporary villas catering to the upper class. As property values kept rising, developers have been buying more and more land and cashed them in by constructing big apartment high-rises.
The construction of the BTS Skytrain in 1999, covering most of Sukhumvit Road, has increased the popularity of this district even more.