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Ain by Bike: Route n° 17 – Secret Spells and Magic Potions

in Châtillon-sur-Chalaronne

40.0 km
3h 15min
Very easy
  • Nature has forever taught us the art of healing, through the animal, plant and mineral kingdoms. Even as far back as the very first civilisations, man began to lay down the foundations of medicine. This early understanding of nature, however modest, would go on to be developed over the centuries.

  • There are a surprising number of apothecaries – the ancestor of today’s pharmacies – found in the region of Rhône-Alpes. A mystery which characterises this circuit, where you will have the opportunity to visit Thoissey and Châtillon-sur-Chalaronne’s apothecaries.

    There are a total of 7 apothecaries in Ain – so, why such a large number in this area? Did the region have an important tradition for medicine and an early vocation for healthcare treatments? Or was it due to the plant life...
    There are a surprising number of apothecaries – the ancestor of today’s pharmacies – found in the region of Rhône-Alpes. A mystery which characterises this circuit, where you will have the opportunity to visit Thoissey and Châtillon-sur-Chalaronne’s apothecaries.

    There are a total of 7 apothecaries in Ain – so, why such a large number in this area? Did the region have an important tradition for medicine and an early vocation for healthcare treatments? Or was it due to the plant life found in the mountains here and their medicinal properties? The local earthenware industry could be another explanation…

    A unique legacy remains of this today, with rich collections of pottery and recipes based on poppies and “health chocolate” preserved in beautiful apothecaries, their walls adorned with wood panelling and fresco paintings from the time.
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