Odivelas is a city and a municipality in Lisbon Metropolitan Area, Portugal, in the Lisbon District and the historical and cultural Estremadura Province.


The municipality is located northwest of Lisbon. The population in 2011 was 144.549, in an area of 26.54 km².

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Odivelas Aerial View


The dolmen in Pedras Grandes and Batalhas (in the parish of Caneças), the Castro of Amoreira (in the parish of Ramada), vestiges of Roman settlements in Póvoa de Santo Adrião, Arab implements in the sub-soils of Paiã (in the parish of Pontinha), indicate that the territory of Odivelas have been occupied continuously over the centuries, owing to its fertile land and temperate climate.

Stolen Lord

The theft from the main church of Odivelas (on 11 May 1671) was the origin to the monument dedicated to the Senhor Roubado (English: Stolen Lord), and which would give rise to the first political cartoon, that would criticize the activities of the Inquisition. This was a period when missionaries returning from Asia and Africa would visit the Convent of Rilhafoles, in Paiã (Pontinha). Another controversy arose in 1723 when the sisters in the monastery were aghast at the assumption that a Brazilian nun could be Jewish, and had infiltrated their order (assuming to save herself from persecution by the Inquisition). They went so far as to present the case to the Cardinal-Inquisitor, and upon that failure, to the King (who refused to arbitrate). The nuns were eventually summarily carted-off by soldiers and returned to the monastery. Ironically, much later, Mother Paula de Odivelas (real name Paula Teresa da Silva e Almeida), whom King John V (30 years her senior) had a passionate affair, would join the sisters. Their relationship would last until the death of the monarch, although the King would provide a generous monthly stipend after his death.

The White Marmelade

The White Marmalade is a convent sweet, produced during centuries, in the Monastery of St. Dinis by the nuns Bernardas. It was made with quinces that grew in the land belonging to the monastery. It was D. Carolina Augusta de Castro e Silva, the last nun of the Convent, who passed this testimony, through a recipe book, to civil society.

The Marmalade was sold to all the nobles, was also a candy that was served in the cultural festivities. This sweet convent became very famous in the region because of Odivelas was a sweet coveted by all.

Currently, the marmalade is still enjoyed by many.

Monastery Kitchen were the Marmalade was made


The origin of the name Odivelas is caught up in a peculiar legend that developed from the reign of King Denis. In the legend, King Denis had a habit of traveling at night to the area of Odivelas, in order to liaison with women. On one of these nights, the Queen (Elizabeth of Portugal) waited for her wandering husband, and confronted him with the nightly trips, asking him:

"Ide vê-las senhor...?" (Going to see them, sir?)

The phrase was, therefore, corrupted into Odivelas, or "where the King went to see them [the ladies]". Another interpretation stems from the component words: "odi" and "velas". The first, of Arab origin, means watercourse, while the second, from the Latin reference for the sails of a windmill. Both a river and vestiges of ancient windmills can be identified in the central part of the community.


In the main square of Odivelas on 1415, Philippa of Lancaster blessed her three sons (EdwardPeter and Henry) when they departed on horseback for Restelo, where they would begin their overseas voyage to take the city-state of Ceuta.


It was in the Monastery of São Dinis that was first presented in 1534 Auto da Cananeia, by the author Gil Vicente, which was commissioned by Mother-Superior Violente, sister of Pedro Álvares Cabral. The lands around Pontinha become a fertile center during this century, as more and more farmers and nobility migrated into this region (along with Póvoa de Santo Adrião and Caneças). Some property-owners, such as the painter Vieira Lusitano, were part of an influx of cultural residents into Odivelas. In Póvoa de Santo Adrião, the painter Pedro Alexandrino would later contribute to the works in the Sé Cathedral in Lisbon, the Queluz National Palace and the Coach Museum in Belém.

Monastery of São Dinis

Monastery of São Dinis (inside)

Monastery of São Dinis - Chapel

Odivelas White Marmalade promotional video

Near Odivelas

Vasco da Gama Shopping Centre in Parque das Nações

Boasting a prime location in Lisbon's Parque das Nações, and featuring 170 shops, a six-screen cinema and a health club, the Vasco da Gama Shopping Centre is a benchmark for anyone who values good shopping and leisure facilities.


Strategically located in a prime area of Lisbon – the Parque das Nações – the Vasco da Gama Shopping Centre gears its offering towards a wide target public that includes not only tourists but also people who live and work in the surrounding area and the cities of Lisbon and Loures. The center opened its doors to the public in 2009 and since then has become a benchmark for everyone who values the option of combining shopping with leisure and free-time activities. To accommodate its many visitors, the Vasco da Gama Centre has around 2,600 parking spaces and 170 shops covering a total gross area of around 49,000m2. Apart from the huge selection of shops, the center also features a six-screen cinema and a health club. Find out all about the Vasco da Gama's initiatives and news online at

Vasco da Gama Shopping Centre

Vasco da Gama Shopping Centre (inside)

Parque das Nações

Lisbon - Capital of Portugal

Lisbon overview

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