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Vichy is a spa resort town in the Allier department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of central France, located in the historic province of Bourbonnais.

Apart from 'taking the waters' it is possibly best known as the final refuge for the Government of France, who had fled Paris as the German army approached in May 1940, going first to Tours, then Bordeaux, then Clermont-Ferrard, and finally Vichy. The town was chosen by the government because it had so many hotels which government ministries could use. It was also in the unoccupied zone. The French government continued with the civil administration of all France (including the German military zones) until September 1944, when it was removed to Germany.