Sandoval Lake is a wonderful stretch of water located in the middle of the Madre de Dios River that runs through the edge of the Amazon rainforest and Peru. Being located with the Tambopata National Reserve and being located near the Bahuaja Sonene Park, the most beautiful lake in Peru offers the tourists an amazing experience of the wildlife of the Amazon rainforest. So, if you are in Puerto Maldonado or want to explore Peru being a part of any trek Peru group, you must not miss a trip to this lake. A trip to Sandoval Lake includes activities like boat riding, jungle hiking, wildlife searching, etc. All these things make this trip a great excursion.
A trip to this lake will allow you to live an unforgettable trip while enjoying the glimpse of different types of reptiles, birds, insects, and fishes in the tropical forest along with various species of orchids, trees, ferns, etc. The lake and its surrounding forest are also the home of the family of giant otters, who are in danger of extinction. Besides, the banks of this lake are populated by flooded Mauritia Palm forests and jungles, which work as the home of monkeys of six different species and a wide range of colors.
Apart from that, this lake is also well known for the variations of marine fauna. Around 6500 species of fish are available here among which paiche is a famous name. This fish is one of the most important parts of the regional cuisine of this area because of its tender and delicate meat.
How to plan a trek to Sandoval Lake?
Depending on your schedule you can plan a day trip or a two days trip to explore this lake. There are many resorts and lodges located nearby, where you can stay at night. You can start the trek to Sandoval Lake from the port of the city in the Madre de Dios River. When you will start your journey through this river, you will have the chance to visit the confluence of two rivers, namely Madre de Dios and Tambopata. And this is the point from where you will be able to connect to the wild nature. From that point, it will take another hour to reach the lake. Once you reach, you have to walk for several minutes to get to the lake, which is protected by Peruvian laws. So, you have to register and pay for the tickets before entering the reserve. After getting the entry, you have to trek for around 5 kilometers to reach the destination.
While walking along this route, you will have a chance to explore different types of trees, shrubs, and palm trees along with different variants of parrots, butterflies, tangaras, macaws, alligators, monkeys, turtles, cranes, river wolves, squirrels, ants, reptiles, and many more. Apart from that, when visiting the lake, you can also immerse yourself in the water full of European eels, piranas, and black caimans. And not to forget, you will have a great time in the water because of the warm temperature.
On the next day, you can visit the lake in the early morning to explore what Sandoval Lake offers. And don’t forget to bring the binoculars. While visiting the lake, you will be able to spot different types of beautiful birds around the lake and will experience the beautiful music they create. If you are lucky enough, you will also see the monkeys in action. After that, you can go for a hike for around 2-2.5 hours. During this hike, you will be able to explore the shadows of the huge trees of the reserve forest. Apart from that, you may get to see some more local birds. Besides, you will get to see different medicinal plants here and will learn more details about them. So, the main goal of this trek is to learn what nature has to offer here.
The next day, you can travel out again to the surrounding areas of Sandoval Lake where you will get to see a large number of palm trees. They are grown in the water and they have created a swamp area, namely Palpa Collpa. And it invites a complete slew of various animals and birds. The most notable ones among them are the parrots and different species of macaws, who visit the swamp area to enjoy the wuallo or the fruits of the palm trees. It is said that wuallo is a great source of potassium, calcium, sodium, and other essential minerals, which aids in the digestion process of these birds.
The surrounding areas of this lake are full of forest species like cedars, chestnuts, and many more. Altogether, these trees offer refuge for different species of animals. And they also help to maintain a perfect balance between the most amazing ecology of the Peruvian Amazon.