The history of Barberino Val d’Elsa dates back to medieval times. The hamlet, which has an unusual elliptical layout, stands on the ancient Strada Regia Romana which linked Rome with Florence. While the road now intersects the eastern part of the hamlet, it once cut right through its heart, meaning that merchants and pilgrims had to pass through the center and often stop for the night. It was this necessity that saw the creation, just in front of Porta Fiorentina, of the Spedale dei Pellegrini, which was for many years a crucial place of refuge for pilgrims, alongside the inns and churches used to refuel body and soul. On the outskirts of the hamlet is the Romanesque church of Sant’Appiano, one of the oldest churches in the Florentine countryside.