The commercial heart of Bangkok, Silom Road is becoming a polluted canyon of skyscrapers, shopping malls, and elevated railway lines, though the area used to consist of orchards flanking a canal. One feature that remains unchanged is the many thousands of barn swallows that nest here from October to March.
Towards the river end of the road, and also on parallel Surawong Road, are several gem and silk shops. Near Patpong (see p120) is the Dusit Thani Hotel that overlooks Lumphini Park and the bustle of the local nightlife. Close by is Convent Road, taking its name from the Carmelite Convent, and also home to the Gothicstyle Anglican Christ Church, built in 1904.