Our earliest historical information about Bientina dates to 793 AD, when the Bishop of Lucca was granted land in the Monastery of Sant’Andrea at Bientina. The castle, the ruins of which are still visible, was constructed at the end of the twelfth century. In these centuries, Bientina – because of its location – was fought over by Pisa and Lucca until, in 1402, it decided to submit to the Florentines, to whom it remained faithful for a very long time, in particular in resisting the 1505 siege by Pisa. The beginning of the tradition of the veneration of San Valentino dates back to 1699. His fame also impressed the Florentine rulers, who often came here to pay homage to his remains. It was the Lorraines, the successors of the Medicis, who began the works to reclaim the Bientina lake.
The “Padule“, the vast plain that extends between the Monti Pisani and the Cerbaie hills, is what remains of the Lake of Bientina after the reclamation works ordered by Leopold II between 1824 and 1859. The Lucchesi called it the Lago di Sesto, because it was located six km from the city, and it was the largest of the Tuscan lakes. Drainage of the lake was completed in 1853, and the advent of industrial agriculture radically changed the fauna and flora and led to the abandonment of certain techniques for fishing and for working with the marsh grasses.
In the city centre, you can still appreciate the remains of the medieval walls and towers and the keep, which is now home to a library and the municipal archives.
For vintage and antique lovers, the traditional market on the last Saturday and Sunday of the month takes place in the main square