In Barberino di Mugello we find one of these Medici villas, that of Cafaggiolo (1454), a place much beloved of Lorenzo the Magnificent, who came here to hunt and compose his poem “Nencia da Barberino”, which concerns a local peasant girl. Its broad frontage, crowned with merlons and brackets, contrasts with its great tower, which is also merloned, but which opens up via a massive door set in bumpy, rough ashlar. The inside, which was largely remodelled during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, contains some attractive stone fireplaces, maybe from the 1500s, in the rooms on the ground floor. To the left of the villa we find the extensive stables (from the sixteenth or seventeenth century) and behind it a park, rich in ancient trees, including a sequoia brought here by Giovanni da Verrazzano.
In its prime, between the end of the fifteenth and the beginning of the sixteenth centuries, Cafaggiolo was also home to a factory of famous maiolica, where master potters worked under Medici protection and patronage.