Aside from world-class shopping in Ratchaprasong, visitors can take in a movie at several cinema complexes, sling balls down bowling alleys, or serenade friends in karaoke booths (SF and Major Cineplex at CentralWorld, or EGV on Ratchadamri). No less than six shrines to deities, whose roots link to ancient Hindu tradition, sit alongside the area's bustling shopping malls, hotels and hot spots.
Undoubtedly the best-known and most revered is the Erawan Shrine. Famous for bringing good fortune, it attracts millions of visitors each year, most of whom deliver offerings of incense, candles, jasmine garlands and gold leaf. Very popular also is the Trimurti Shrine, which young Thais flock to for help in affairs of the heart, and the Elephant or Ganesh Shrine, popular with artists looking for inspiration and those seeking wisdom or fortune (both outside CentralWorld). Others include the Indra Shrine (Amarin Plaza), Narayana Statue (outside the Intercontinental Hotel) and the Goddess Lakshmi Statue (4th floor, Gaysorn).
One of Bangkok's most prestigious temples, Wat Pathumanaram, is also here (Rama I Road). It houses the ashes of Prince Mahidol, father of both King Rama XIII and IX (H.M. King Bumibol Adulyadej), and those of H.M. the King's mother. Visitors can join meditation sessions early morning, or visit throughout the day.
Throughout the year, Ratchaprasong is also the scene of colourful events and activities, nearly all of which are free to attend. Highlights include end-of-season sales in January and around June/July, the annual New Year's Eve Countdown (when around 100,000 people flock here to enjoy live music and entertainment), and many fashion shows, promotions and fairs spread throughout the year. The CentralWorld Square often puts on concerts and festivals.