According to a legend, the lake derived its name from a giant tamarind (sampalok) tree in the garden of a selfish couple who drove away a fairy disguised as a beggar asking for some fruit.
Hardly an hour after the old man left, there was a thundering noise followed by the cracking of the earth. The next instant the entire orchard sank into a colossal pit which was eventually filled with water.
The city's biggest and premier lake is located within the city proper. It has an area of 104.0 hectares, a maximum depth of 27.0 meters. Approximately 85% of its volume is of uniform depth. Sampalok Lake is sunk in a shallow depression, revealing its volcanic origin.
Considered one of the prime tourist spots in the city, Sampalok Lake is dotted with floating restaurants along its shoreline that serve delectable Filipino and Chinese cuisines. It abounds with tilapia, bangus, carp and several species of shrimps. It is presently lined with fishpens and small cottages built on bamboo stilts.
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