We tried to plan for my birthday so that we were somewhere fun and also had a base for a few days and it turned out Hoi An would be the place. A beautiful French colonial town built up around a nice river, many of the buildings have a Chinese and Japanese style as well which was really nice. Apparently the river couldn't sustain larger ships and so instead of becoming a big shipping town it kept its quirky local feel about it. All the shops and buildings seem like they're stuck in history.
We had 4 days in Hoi An, booked into a really nice guesthouse, big room, balcony and not far from town. One of the nice things about Hoi An is that some of the main activities are just mooching around town. We spent a lot of time in nice restaurants and little bars, got some tailored shirts and very good converse copies!
One day we hired out a moped and visited 'marble mountain', nice just scooting around town as well. The mountain was really cool with loads of beautiful Buddhist temples on the top of it. The food in Hoi An was definitely the best we'd had in Vietnam so far. Great curries, prawn and pork dishes and even a pizza with an Italian chef.
On the day of my birthday we made a nice few calls home, drunk on and off for most of the day in town and that night hit the little strip of bars across the river. We definitely felt our age a bit in the 'all you can drink bars' with cheesy music and loads of young backpackers on their first trip around South East Asia! We had fun though, although not the next day! Hangovers and a full afternoon and evening on a bus are never good!
Not really sure what it's supposed to feel like turning 30 but after 13 months spent travelling all over the World I couldn't have hoped for a better run up to it! Definitely not ready to be boring and sensible yet!