Palmela 2011 Location

Palmela is a charming small town centered around a fortified castle at an altitude of 378 meters at the edge of the Arrábida mountain range, 40km south of Lisbon and 10km north of Setúbal and it’s a semi-rural town, right in the middle of Portugal’s biggest urban area.

Portugal’s first king, Afonso Henriques, captured Palmela from the Moors in the mid-12th century after a surprise attack on the King of Badajoz. Its past strategic importance is evident given that the views from here are astounding, taking in vast expanses of farmland, the Sado estuary to the south and even Lisbon to the north.

Palmela lies at the heart of one of Portugal’s richest wine growing regions, reflected in the lively local annual festivities and the wines of this region which have achieved international awards in several festivals like Bordeaux’s.



Palmela’s traditional products are the wine and the Queijo de Azeitão (Azeitão’s cheese), both very appreciated. There are several festivals dedicated to these products, being the most famous the Festa das Vindimas (Vines’ Festival) and the Festival do Queijo, Pão e Vinho (Festival of Cheese, Bread and Wine).

The town’s ex libris is the castle (Castelo de Palmela), which offers a unique view over the whole region of Setúbal’s Peninsula, Lisbon, and the Atlantic Coast. It was a strategic place in past centuries, and today it is still a main knot of Portugal’s road and rail networks.

The town’s name comes from her Roman founder, Cornelius Palma (Palmella). Palmela, once a fortress, was conquered by the Portuguese in the 12th century, from Muslim invaders.

Palmela is the birthplace of the Portuguese explorer Hermenegildo Capelo and, as a curiosity, where some famous individuals such as Hans Christian Andersen were briefly hosted.

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