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Country  Portugal
Area  230.33 km2
Region  Lisbon
District  Setubal

Setubal ( ) is a city and a municipality in Portugal. The population in 2011 was 121,185, in an area of 230.33 km2 (88.9 sq mi) km². The city proper had 89,303 inhabitants in 2001.


Map of Setubal

In the times of Al-Andalus the city was known as Shetubar (Arabic: ???????? [?et?u?baer]). In the 19th century, the port was called St. Ubes in English and St Yves in French.

Portinho setubal sierra arrabida portugal august 2007

The municipal holiday is September 15, which marks the date in the year 1860 on which King Pedro V of Portugal officially recognised Setubal as a city.

City information

The city of Setubal is located on the northern bank of the Sado River estuary, approximately 40 kilometres (25 miles) south of Portugals capital, Lisbon. It is also the seat of the Setubal District.

In the beginning of the 20th century, Setubal was the most important center of Portugals fishing industry, particularly sardines. None of the many factories then created are operating today. However, the existing maritime ports, either traditional, commercial and the new marines, keep the city links to the ocean and water well alive and vibrant. Tourism, based on the beautiful existing natural conditions plus excellent hotels, resorts and infrastructures, is one of the citys most appreciated resources, due to its interconnection location with Sado (river) on one side and Atlantic Ocean on another, having a coast line with both. Also connected with the nearby coast of the Arrabida hills natural park - which offers an unspoiled nature and beautiful beaches to the Atlantic Ocean. A dolphin colony inhabits the Sado River. Across the river on the south bank lies the peninsula of Troia, a place with vast white/golden sand beaches where several luxury hotels and resorts were recently built. The Troia peninsula can be sighted from the city, across the river. Albarquel, Figueirinha, Galapos, Galapinhos and Portinho da Arrabida are some of the citys many beaches, located in the north bank of the estuary, at the very beginning of the Arrabida hills.

The main historical monument of the city of Setubal is the Monastery of Jesus, with a 15th- and 16th-centuries church that represents one of the first buildings in the Portuguese late Gothic style known as Manueline.

Also of interest are the Sao Juliao Church, also with Manueline portals. The Castelo de Sao Filipe, is a 16th- and 17th-centuries fortress on the north bank of the Sado river, overseeing the city. The fortress was converted into a luxury hotel (pousada).

Teatro Animacao de Setubal is based in Setubal.

Demography (municipality)


Administratively, the municipality is divided into 5 civil parishes (freguesias):

  • Azeitao (Sao Lourenco e Sao Simao)
  • Gambia – Pontes – Alto da Guerra
  • Sado
  • Setubal (Sao Juliao, Nossa Senhora da Anunciada e Santa Maria da Graca)
  • Setubal (Sao Sebastiao)



The citys main sports club is Vitoria de Setubal, established on November 20, 1910.

Notable residents and citizens

International relations

Setubal is twinned with:

Setubal has international cooperation protocols with:



According to the census of 2011, the municipality of Setubal had a labor force of 58,514 people, among whom 15.6% were unemployed. Among those who had a job, 1.6% were working in the Primary sector, 24.9% in the Secondary sector and 73.5% in the Tertiary sector. Setubal is notable for the industries of pulp, paper, cement, fertilizers, pesticides, other phytopharmaceutical products, thermal power, shipbuilding and ship repair. The Port of Setubal had a cargo throughput of 6.058 million tons in 2012, making it the 4th busiest port in Portugal, with 7.4% of the cargo throughput in the country.


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