Over here at Nettium, we spend our time and efforts to working hard! On top of that, we promote having healthy relationships with our coworkers outside of the office. And the annual company trip is a chance to bond and do just that.
This year, it was a 4 days 3 nights trip to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and it was open to whoever wanted to join- from any department! Although the trip was split into two, both batches had the same itinerary and experienced the same amount of fun!
Everyone gathered at KLIA2 at 3.30AM. Yes, you read that right, 3.30 in the morning. Although it was early and the sun was nowhere in sight, there was a group of bright-faced individuals, all dressed in uniform Nettium T-shirts, ready to board the 6.55AM flight (breakfast onboard included!). As soon as they landed, the itinerary provided a list of things to do and places to see, thus began their journey in Ho Chi Minh City.
First on the list, was the famous Cu Chi Tunnels – a must have on anyone’s bucket list when visiting Ho Chi Minh City. Some of us were too afraid to enter the tunnel and decided to remain outside and have a tea-spilling, chit-chat session instead! On the other hand, those who ventured on had an amazing encounter as they embraced the rich, cultural background the Cu Chi Tunnels had to offer.
Idiyana described the experience as unique and fun. She appreciated how well they maintained the tunnels despite it being ancient! She also added that it was not as scary as she had anticipated. (phew, always a relief, right?)
But not every person managed to enter the tunnel!
“Since the Cuchi tunnels kept getting narrower and narrower each time, it was hard for me to fit. Then it got me thinking- wow, I really need to lose some weight!” – Karthik
One of the highlights of the trip was the Binh Tay Market, a beautiful two-storey building with reminiscences of French influence on its architecture. Everyone had a chance to shop till they dropped and bargain on a variety of things such as delicious local food, well-crafted handcrafts, and beautiful textiles.
“I was comparing the prices of a bag that I liked. When the seller offered me a price too high, I refused. Suddenly, the guy started scolding me for not buying! Bickering away, so scary! At that moment was when I decided to just run away” – Tracy on Binh Tay Market
The second day of the trip was a day dedicated to visiting MyTho and the Mekong River – a province located in the Mekong Delta.
The island hopping was so much fun! We managed to witness exquisite river banks and embrace the freshness that coupled the magnificent green rainforests before settling at Unicorn Island.
There, we were greeted with fresh honey infused with tea. It was amazingly delicious- a much-needed refreshment!
Believe it or not, we then rode horses on carriages – like straight out of a fairytale! It brought us to the area that took us on a sampan ride that was rowed by skillful boatman and women. It was cool seeing these rowers maneuver through the water like it’s their second nature!
The day continued with a visit to the Vinh Trang Pagoda, where we were awed by its majestic architecture and rich history. It was a tranquil area with cloudy skies and greenery which was perfect for self-reflection and a “few” selfie-shots! (But I’m sure we took more than a few)
The cherry on the cake for the evening was a delicious seafood dinner on a cruise ship that sailed the straits of Ho Chi Minh. We enjoyed ending the night with a belly full of seafood while embracing the night-view of the city. The cruise even had live music performances and a special treat for everyone, especially the guys – belly dancers! Their dancing caught the attention of many.
“The dancers had the guys tailing them from one end of the boat to the other!” (Not us ladies, of course!) – Ting
“What can I say…. The feeling of eating good Vietnamese food, surrounded by friends, riding on a cruise ship – I felt like a proper Billionaire!”-Vaibhav
Many of us did whatever we wanted! It was a free-day and Ho Chi Minh was ours for the taking! Some of us managed to share what they did on that day.
“The itinerary had some suggested places we can visit, like the red church. We didn’t use any public transport and walked everywhere, despite the rain! We had our ponchos on and braced the rain. If I remember correctly, we walked about 16KM!” – Vincent
“I went back to Binh Tay Market to shop more! They had a bunch of fabric that was super cheap. I managed to buy beautiful fabrics for all my upcoming occasions, like next year’s Raya and weddings. I couldn’t help myself!” – Erra
“I had a Vietnamese friend who took me around and became my private tour guide. I was blessed with the opportunity to eat home cooked food prepared by her Mother. It was delicious!” – Joo Ning
All-in-all, the trip ended on the 4th day. Sad and disappointed that the trip had ended, everyone said their goodbyes to the comfortable hotel and the vibrant Ho Chi Minh as they headed back to KL in the morning.
What did our Nettiumers have to say about the overall experience?
Here are some testimonials on the trip;
Vincent: “It was a well-organized trip and definitely topped the previous company trip”
Sook Yi: “Ho Chi Minh is a great city with amazing an amazing night culture”
Tracy: “The trip was good but the abundance of traffic and motorbikes on the streets of Ho Chi Minh is scary!”
Ting: “Although the heat was scorching and almost unbearable, it did not stop me from having a lot of fun”
Erra: “I loved being able to learn about other cultures and also having a great opportunity to mingle with my coworkers. I managed to find out new information about them!”