Located deep in Peru's Tambopata National Reserve, Sandoval Lake Lodge is perched above what many rain forest specialists feel is the most attractive lake in Peru, and provides access to one of the most biologically diverse areas on the planet. The Tambopata National Reserve and the adjacent Bahuaje-Sonene National Park, is home to over 20,000 plant species, over 900 species of birds (more than all the species in the continental USA), 91 mammals, 1230 butterflies, 127 amphibians and reptiles, and much more! It is also a haven for the Amazon's largest, most spectacular and most endangered predators - the Jaguar, the Giant Otter, the Harpy Eagle and the Black Caiman. Try a visit to the excellent lowland rain forest of the Tambopata National Reserve to see some of the world's best rain forest wildlife that is available in a short, economical stay. Six species of monkeys inhabit the surrounding forest, the lake's resident family of Giant Otters are regularly seen fishing in the lake, a large flooded palm grove harbors hundreds of Red-Bellied macaws, and at nightfall Black Caimans, the rarest of the crocodilians, head out into the lake to fish. Its privileged location gives you exclusive access to the lake in the early morning and late afternoon, the choice hours for wildlife viewing and photography
Location and Access
A daily commercial flight from Lima (2 hours) and Cusco (30 minutes) brings you to Puerto Maldonado, a bustling frontier town and the gateway to the Tambopata National Reserve. Here one of our staff will meet you as you leave the airport arrivals area, and will remain with you until you return to the airport to board your flight back to Cusco or Lima.
We are transferred to our office to repackage or left extra luggage in the storeroom of our office. As we will enter to a National Reserve, each passenger is allowed a 10 kg baggage; we provide duffels for repacking. After that we have a 15-minute bus or van transfer to the Tambopata River port, and then take a motorized canoe for 30 minutes down the Madre de Dios River to the trail access to Sandoval Lake Lodge. Our boats are equipped with a 65 HP engine, a roof to protect from the sun and the rain, cushioned seats.
From the Madre de Dios River we walk for 45 to 50 minutes along two miles (3,2 km) of flat, rain forest trail. Once we reach a channel, we board canoes and are paddled 220 yards (201 meters) through a flooded forest of 100-foot (30-meters) tall Mauritia palms. As the canal opens onto the shimmering surface of the lake, we transfer to a catamaran or a boat and are leisurely paddled across the lake to the lodge.
Facilities and rooms
The lodge is constructed almost entirely of ecologically harvested "driftwood" mahogany trees collected from the floods that naturally carry logs downriver out of Manu National Park.
The lodge is one extended structure consisting of a large screened main dining room and lounge area, one wing with 16 rooms with private bathrooms and another wing of 9 rooms also with private bathroom facilities. The rooms are screened; all showers have hot water.
All rooms have electricity, supplemented by kerosene lamps and candles. There are several strategically placed sitting areas overlooking the lake.
All meals are included in the trip: from the Lunch on the first day until the breakfast on the last day. We believe that our guests should experience as much of the Peruvian cuisine as possible, and this is reflected in the range of Peruvian dishes offered, with an occasional international twist. Typical lunch dishes served are lomo saltado (a spicy mix of stir fried beef, tomato, peppers, onion and french fries) and arroz con pollo (a mildly spicy mix of saffron rice, chicken and vegetables).
Our experienced kitchen personnel can also cater for special dietary requirements, such as low or no salt, low or no sugar, low or no fat, and vegetarian (strict "vegan") or "ovo-lacto" vegetarian), upon request.
Lighting and Electricity
All rooms and communal areas have electricity at specific hours (from 5:00 am to 6:00, from 12:00 to 16:00 and 17:30 to 22:00 hours). Camcorders can be recharged from our generator, but please note that guests may need to bring a special adaptor to plug into the generator.
There are no telephones or Wi-Fi in the Lodge, however the lodge is equipped with a cell phone and may be in contact with our Puerto Maldonado office any time.
Transfers from the airport to the port in Puerto Maldonado and vice versa. Accommodations with all meals (from lunch on the first day to the breakfast on the last day), English or Spanish speaking guide, river transportation, all guided excursion described in the itinerary (visits in the lake and trails system) and the Tambopata National Reserve entrance fee.