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“be aware you have a long walk carrying your own lugguage but worth it” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Sandoval Lake Lodge

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Sandoval Lake Lodge
Ranked #2 of 10 Hotels in Puerto Maldonado
Manchester
Level Contributor
65 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“be aware you have a long walk carrying your own lugguage but worth it”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 June 2014

We really enjoyed this trip. Saw lots of animals and birds, 5 sorts of monkey, sloth, and the giant otters but feel that you need to be aware that after the initial motorised boat trip you then have to walk for 1 and a half hours carrying your own luggage along what in May was a very muddy track (up to a foot deep for us).

The lodge is adequate and reasonably comfortable but not a luxury lodge the food is quite good though.

There were good points of course we saw lots of wildlife and Esau was a wonderful guide we enjoyed our walks through the rainforest and the trips around the lake but feel that if you have any sort of walking difficulty or are unable to carry your own luggage you may need to choose nearer lodge.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Carol157
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
InkaNaturaTravelWeb, Sales Manager at Sandoval Lake Lodge, responded to this review, 11 June 2014
Dear Guest,

Thanks for sharing your comments with us!
Also glad that you had the chance to view lots of animals surrounding that area in Tambopata.

On the way to our lodge we walk a trail of 3 Km (2 mi), stopping to watch birds and butterflies.
The Reserve has planned to improve this trail and the maintenance of it is going on the right path. Soon it would be ready!

I would like to apologies if you felt that we didn`t take care of your luggage on the way to our lodge. All of our staff and guides are well prepared and very helpful, they always help our guests to carry their luggage, guests only take with themselves their backpack.

Thanks again for sharing your experience with us, it helps us to continue improving.

Inkanatura Sales Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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129 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Norwegian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bracknell
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 April 2014

This place is amazing...I read a lot of the reviews before going, all with a pinch of salt, and I'm glad I did. Yes you have a bit of a trek to get here...but that's all part of the experience...the boat trip down the main river, the walk..its not taxing and brilliant way to get to the lake...then a canoe trip across the lake to the lodge..wildlife spotting all along the way!
I loved the fact that there was no constant electricity I loved that we couldn't get wifi, we were really in the proper jungle and lazying about in a hammock between various nature walks and boat trips.
Its not for those that like their creature comforts so don't go! but if you want to escape for a few days then its perfect, this was place was a short hop in a bigger Peru itinerary but so glad it was part of it.
Canoe trip at night with no light pollution where you can see the milky way, wildlife galore..including the big spiders...again don't go if that's not what you are interested in!
For wildlife nuts who are happy to forgo the usual modern living comforts for a few days its great!
As for the otters they were my highlight...that's why we went and we werent disappointed!
AMAZING!!

Food was excellent everyday a three course meal at lunch and dinner..considering everything has to come the same route that you do...they manage brilliantly!

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank esiotrot10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
InkaNaturaTravelWeb, Senior Travel Advisor at Sandoval Lake Lodge, responded to this review, 15 April 2014
Thank you for sharing your comments.with us We are pleased you enjoyed the time you spent at our Lodge. Thank you for the photo.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leesburg, Virginia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 December 2013

I cannot say enough wonderful things about our experience at Sandoval Lake Lodge. I heartily agree with all the positive points made by others. Our guide Blinio was awesome - extremely helpful, patient, knowledgeable. On our jungle treks and canoe trips he would point out amazing things that we never would've noticed on our own - and then supply interesting facts.

We were a group of 4 friends in our late 60s - with some minor medical issues - and both the lodge and Blinio were extremely helpful and accommodating. They also provided really excellent vegetarian options for the vegetarians in our group. They always remembered the various dietary restrictions and consulted with us before preparing the dishes to make sure they were ok.

All in all...a fabulous experience! Thank you Blinio and Sandoval Lake Lodge!

"The Peru Crew"
Nov 3-6, 2013

  • Stayed November 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank 1nevrknows
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
WA
Level Contributor
40 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 November 2013

I recently stayed here for three nights with a small group of fellow travellers, and it really felt like an adventure from start to finish. Our tour was organised by Inkanatura and we were well looked after from the moment we landed in Puerto Maldonado. We were driven to their office where we were given duffel bags to put our gear in for the four days, and the rest of our luggage was put in secure storage. We selected a pair of wellington boots in case it rained and the track was muddy, and off we went in a minibus to the first boat trip.

Once on the long motorboat, and our life jackets on, we set off on the wide brown river. Before long, small individual baskets were passed around; lunch! A delicious fried rice dish, wrapped in leaves and tied with string, a banana and several small sweets and a bottle of water. It was just perfect to accompany the boat trip.

After about 45 minutes or so, we landed and began the walk - around 3km through jungle to the lake. Luckily, the ground was mostly firm, so we didn't need the wellies. The mud puddles we did see were a bonus, because they were covered in amazing butterflies seeking the moisture. It was warm though, and there were lots of mosquitoes so you really must wear loose clothing and repellant, and sunscreen - there is still plenty of UV under the tree canopy. Staff carry the bags all the way, so you don't need to. A further boat, rowed by the staff, took us through a patch of jungle and onto the amazing, breathtaking lake.

The lodge manager welcomes each group and gives a bit of a talk about electricity times, meal times etc then it's off to your room. These are small, and the walls are just thin wooden panels, so noise can be an issue. Our bathroom really needed some work - the shower rail was held up by fishing line, and there was a lot of other maintenance work needed; however everything worked adequately.

The tours were great - and there were so many each day, beginning early to catch the wildlife at dawn and ending with a cruise on the lake late in the day, and sometimes a night walk in the jungle - brilliant close encounters with tarantulas and massive frogs practically guaranteed. We also saw caiman, giant otters, monkeys and many beautiful birds - what an experience. Our guide, Oscar, was very knowledgeable and very adept at spotting interesting flora and fauna, and helped take photos too. He and Jose, our boatman, were fantastic and friendly.

The food was plain, but good, and there was plenty of it. They did a pretty good job of providing for dietary requirements too. And the coffee was hot and ready for us at 4.30am when we were going out on an expedition - brilliant! The bar staff were great, providing many Pisco sours, G&Ts and other drinks. The generator broke down for close to 24 hours when we were there, but the meals and the bar kept up a good standard despite the obvious difficulties in doing so. Well done!

All in all, it was excellent, apart from a fair bit of maintenance work being needed. A very memorable experience.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank dunelm23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Copenhagen, Denmark
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 November 2013

We had an amazing trip to the lake. Our guide Esauu was very knowledgable and took us for jungle walks (day and night) and trips to the lake. The food was really good, there is a nice atmosphere and they are paying attention to conserving the area.

Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank AnNoCh2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Albuquerque, New Mexico
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 August 2013

I am reading some of the negative reviews of this place and all I have to say is that those folks did not read up on this place before they went. That is your own fault!

My husband, daughter and I just returned from the Sandoval Lodge. We had a wonderful time! We admired the adventure of the boat ride, hike and lovely canoe ride to the lodge. The wild life was amazing and the sheer beauty of the surroundings was breathtaking!

The food was delicious and extremely fresh. They even prepared wonderful vegetarian meals for our daughter.

My only complaint was I was kept up at night by the snoring of my next door neighbor. So, bring ear plugs if you are a light sleeper! Also, they ran out of red wine:(

Thank you, Sandoval Lodge for a memorable experience!

Room Tip: Bring ear plugs:)
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Eileen K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Georgetown, Texas
Level Contributor
182 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 July 2013

Ok, to all those other reviewers complaining of mud and bugs: DO YOU EVER LEAVE YOUR OWN HOUSE??? For everyone else - you must go here! Yes, it's remote, but that's why it's such a cool place.

My wife and I did the 3D/2N trip here through InkaNatura. It was the last part of our vacation in Peru, and probably the highlight for both of us - yes, even more so than Machu Picchu! Getting to the Lodge is an experience in itself, but not really difficult or long. Just bring plenty of bug spray and lightweight clothes and you'll be fine.

The lodge itself is actually pretty incredible. No luxury status or Michelin stars here, but considering the location it's actually a really nice place to stay. Upon arriving, you quickly feel the slow pace of life in the jungle. Nature walks are at your own speed, and the canoe trips around the lake practically define serene. The amount of wildlife and the incredible variety within astounded me. You really feel like you're in some sort of documentary - which makes sense when you are told the BBC has filmed here. We saw otters, caimans, leaf-cutter ants, walking palms, macaws, spider monkeys, Brazil nut tree, termites, lizards, agutis...need I go on? I seriously doubt I can every enjoy a zoo again. Being on Sandoval Lake was so very cool!

I should also add that our guide, Cesar (provided through InkaNatura), was absolutely amazing. He was very patient with us, and seemed to thoroughly enjoy his job. However, the best part was his voluminous knowledge of the jungle life. You'd only have to walk a few feet with him before he was pointing out some unusual plant or animal that you'd only every seen on TV (if you'd ever seen it at all).

We never had any problems with the staff, the lodging, or the food. Our room was comfortable, and the turn-down service was a pleasant touch. Hot water was available, but not always long-lasting. The intermittent periods of electricity were never an issue (this is the jungle, folks - electricity is a luxury, not a necessity). The food was very tasty, and always just the right amount.

While I heartily recommend Sandoval Lake Lodge for a taste of the jungle, it has whet my appetite for viewing wildlife and next time I might dedicate a whole week and go somewhere even more remote. But for 1-3 day excursions, you really can't beat this place!

Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
6 Thank crusadercc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sandoval Lake Lodge

Property: Sandoval Lake Lodge
Address: Puerto Maldonado Peru, Puerto Maldonado, Peru
Region: Peru > Madre de Dios Region > Puerto Maldonado
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 10 Hotels in Puerto Maldonado
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:1 star — Sandoval Lake Lodge 1*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sandoval Lake Lodge: Located deep in Peru's Tambopata National Reserve, our Sandoval Lake lodge overlooks sparkling, palm-rimmed Sandoval Lake, the most beautiful and wildlife-rich of all lakes in Tambopata-Madidi. This privileged location gives you exclusive access to the lake in the early morning and late afternoon, the choice hours for wildlife viewing and photography. No other lodge in Tambopata-Madidi is on the banks of a protected oxbow lake. Our short Sandoval Lake Lodge program includes two nights of fully-screened accommodation in 25 double-occupancy rooms complete with en suite facilities with hot-water showers, electricity (*), fans, meals, airport transfers in Puerto Maldonado, naturalist guides, lake excursions by day in search of Giant Otters, monkeys, and macaws, forest excursions, night excursions in search of caimans, and evening slide shows. Our lodge specializes in small groups and individualized attention in our overriding quest to conserve the lake and surrounding rainforest. Sandoval Lake Lodge is built out of ecologically-correct driftwood mahogany and is owned jointly by a nonprofit conservation group and five families of indigenous Brazil nut collectors. (*) Three times per day: from 5:00 to 6:00 am, from noon to 4:00 pm and from 17:30 to 22:30 pm. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandoval Lake Hotel Puerto Maldonado

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