Dee Doke Waterfall (also known as Dee Dote) is a hidden gem located high in the mountains just outside of Mandalay City, Myanmar. Get off the beaten Myanmar route and take the time to visit Dee Doke Waterfall and the incredible blue lagoons for I guarantee it won’t disappoint!
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WHERE IS DEE DOTE WATERFALL?
Dee Doke Waterfall is approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes drive southeast of Mandalay City.
HOW TO GET HERE
The scenic drive out to Dee Dote will take you through small local villages at the foot of towering cliffs and eventually running parallel with the beautiful Myitnge River.
There are two options for getting to Dee Dote Waterfall and they are;
#1 Rent a scooter
Renting a scooter in Mandalay is cheap and the most efficient way to get around self-guided. I rented a scooter from Mandalay Motorbike Rental and Tours for 10,000 Kyat per day.
The bikes are in great condition and the guys at the rental shop were very friendly. Alternatively, your accommodation may be able to organize a scooter rental for you.
#2 Grab taxi
The cost of a Grab taxi from Mandalay to Dee Doke is approximately 120,000 Kyat one way. Download the Grab app from the App Store on your smartphone in order to use Grab taxi services.
Must Read → 2 Week Myanmar Itinerary
ARRIVING AT DEE DOKE WATERFALL
There are no signposts showing the entrance to Dee Dote Waterfall from the road so please listen carefully to these directions.
Using the map above, turn right off the main Mandalay-Lashio Rd at the Full Max Petrol Station and stay on this Unnamed Road for exactly 22km.
You will then take a left-hand turn onto a gravel road, drive for a further 2 minutes to the parking lot. See the image below for reference.
Turn left here at this road
WHAT TO EXPECT
I arrived at the gravel parking lot at around 9 am. I paid 3oo Kyat to park the scooter and there were no other entrance fees to visit the waterfall.
It’s an easy to moderate 20-minute hike from the car park to the main falls.
It was crazy to see the minimalist lives that the locals were living in their DIY bamboo huts on the way up to the falls. Some shelter, food, and water are all they needed and seemed happy enough to say Mingalabar (hello) with a big grin on their face as I walked past.
The main falls at Dee Doke Waterfall
You will come to an intersection along the rocky trail, one path leading down to the left and the other path up to the right. Take the path down to the left for a 2-minute hike down to the main swimming area. The other trail leads up to the blue lagoons which I will mention further down in this blog post.
The main swimming area has a number of rock pools and a small waterfall breaking through the rocks halfway up the valley.
The water is a bit fresh until the sun reaches up over the mountains at around 10 am lighting up the entire valley and providing some heat down in the rock pools.
There is also a small cafe built into the side of the mountain selling cold drinks and snack foods.
RELATED ARTICLE → 10 THINGS TO DO IN MANDALAY
Dee Doke Rockpools
Main swimming area at Dee Doke Falls
THE BLUE LAGOONS
After swimming at the Dee Dote Waterfall and the surrounding rock pools, continue the adventure further up the valley to the other blue lagoons.
Walk back to the intersection on the trail and then take the path that leads off to the right. It’s a further 5 to 10-minute hike to reach the blue lagoons at the top of the valley.
I was in awe when I laid eyes on this crazy lagoon. The color of the water was fluorescent blue, getting its color from the towering limestone cliffs that surround the lagoon.
The lagoon was no more than 2 meters deep so I wouldn’t recommend doing any cliff jumping here, however, it would be rude not to go for a refreshing swim to cool off.
One of the many beautiful features of this blue lagoon is the unique tree that is growing tall right out of the fluorescent blue waters. Impressive to say the least!
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Tree growing in the blue lagoon
An aerial perspective
WHERE TO STAY IN MANDALAY
Mandalay has dozens of accommodations to choose from so I have narrowed it down to a few of the best places to stay in Mandalay to suit the needs of luxury travelers, budget backpackers, and everyone in between.
See the list of accommodations below that I personally recommend:
Luxury: Hilton Mandalay
Mid Range: Eastern Palace Hotel
Budget: Hotel Venus
FOR ALL OTHER PLACES TO STAY IN MANDALAY, SEARCH ON AGODA OR SEARCH ON BOOKING.COM
Another option for accommodation is to stay at an Airbnb, which generally has some great deals.
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LONELY PLANET MYANMAR
One of the best books to take on your trip is the Lonely Planet Myanmar Guide!
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