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Flag of Palmela
Coat of arms of Palmela
Coordinates: 38°34′N 8°54′W / 38.567°N 8.900°W / 38.567; -8.900Coordinates: 38°34′N 8°54′W / 38.567°N 8.900°W / 38.567; -8.900
Country Portugal
Metropolitan areaLisbon
 • PresidentÁlvaro Balseiro Amaro (CDU)
 • Total465.12 km2 (179.58 sq mi)
 • Total62,831
 • Density140/km2 (350/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC±00:00 (WET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+01:00 (WEST)
Local holiday1 June

Palmela (Portuguese pronunciation: [palˈmɛlɐ] (listen)) is a town and a municipality in Portugal. The population in 2011 was 62,831,[1] in an area of 465.12 km².[2]

The municipality is located in the Lisboa Region and Setúbal District, about 25 km (16 mi) south of Lisbon. The municipal holiday is 1 June.


Administratively, the municipality is divided into 4 civil parishes (freguesias):[3]

  • Palmela
  • Pinhal Novo
  • Poceirão e Marateca
  • Quinta do Anjo

General information[edit]

View of Palmela, with the Municipality building (foreground) and castle uphill.
Castle of Palmela and surrounding landscape.

The area has been settled since at least Neolithic times, as evidenced by excavations at places such as the artificial caves of Casal do Pardo and the Castro of Chibanes. The town's name comes from its Roman founder, Cornelius Palma (Palmella). Palmela, once a fortress, was conquered by the Portuguese in the 12th century. A semi-rural town, it is located up a hill in the Arrábida area, within Portugal's largest urban area. Many people are moving in from big cities like Lisbon. Wild fires in the region are a threat to the environment.

The castle, Castelo de Palmela, offers a unique over the whole region of the Setúbal Peninsula, Lisbon, and the Atlantic Coast. It was a strategic place in past centuries, and today it is still a main juncture of Portugal's road and rail networks.

Palmela is home to many multinational industrial units like Volkswagen and Coca-Cola, and a significant number of foreign families live in the area. The local radio often broadcasts in Ukrainian.

Palmela's traditional products are its wine, which has achieved international awards in several festivals like that of Bordeaux, and the Queijo de Azeitão (Azeitão cheese). There are several festivals dedicated to these products, the most famous being the Festa das Vindimas (Harvest' Festival) and the Festival do Queijo, Pão e Vinho (Festival of Cheese, Bread and Wine).

Palmela is the birthplace of the Portuguese explorer Hermenegildo Capelo. Some other famous individuals such as Hans Christian Andersen were briefly hosted there.


The municipality is famous for its production of fruit and wine.

In the 1990s, the joint-venture Volkswagen-Ford AutoEuropa vehicle production plant opened, to produce the Mk1 MPV sold under three marques: Volkswagen Sharan, SEAT Alhambra and Ford Galaxy. After Ford left the joint venture, the plant has since continued to produce the Volkswagen and SEAT products, and added the Volkswagen Eos, Volkswagen Scirocco and Volkswagen T-Roc.

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Instituto Nacional de Estatística
  2. ^ "Áreas das freguesias, concelhos, distritos e país". Archived from the original on 2018-11-05. Retrieved 2018-11-05.
  3. ^ Diário da República. "Law nr. 11-A/2013, pages 552 87-88" (pdf) (in Portuguese). Retrieved 29 July 2014.

External links[edit]

Media related to Palmela at Wikimedia Commons