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This is one of the five rides described in Thor & Dag Otto's Cycle Routes. If you would like to explore the coastline between Grimstad and Arendal, Thor Hushovd's roundabout route to Arendal is the perfect choice. With Grimstad Tourist Office as starting point, follow route 420 north-east past Grimstad Town Hall, via Vikkilen to Vik, and then onwards to Fevik. At Strandsvingen, you are within touching distance of the sea. As you reach Feviktoppen, turn right and follow the signs for Søm along Sømsveien. Turn left towards Engene, and then right as you reach Østre Vessøya. Follow this road until you meet route 420. Turn right towards Arendal, and continue for approx. 2 km on route 420. At the roundabout at Nedenes, turn right and follow this road leading via Nedeneshallen. After some 2 km, you will be back on route 420. Follow this towards Arendal. 400 m after Vippa bridge, turn right towards Utnes. Then, after a further 750 m, turn left towards Hisøy Church. As you reach the T-junction, turn left. Where Hisøy Church comes in to view, follow the signs for Kolbjørnsvik. After 1 km, turn right and follow Gamle Sandvigvei. Then turn left onto Sandvigvei towards Kolbjørnsvik. Make time for a break at the idyllic Kolbjørnsvik before you continue along Noroddveien and then Vikaveien. This will take you to the mainland via the bridge. Follow route 420 to Arendal town centre. By the Amfi Arena shopping complex, continue straight ahead until you reach Pollen – ideal for a lunch or an ice-cream break. On your return, follow the same route (420) back towards Fevik. At the roundabout before the Strømbrua bridge, take first right towards Bjorbekk. Follow route 407 along river Nidelva for 9.5 km. When you cross Nidelva, follow the cycle path on the left hand side of the road. This will take you onto route 53 which runs parallel with route 407 but has very limited traffic. You will eventually rejoin route 407; follow this all the way to Vik. As you reach route 420, turn right and then take the first left. This will lead via Vikkilen and back to Grimstad town centre.
Comments: Idyllic scenery, urban life, and excellent swimming opportunities. A stunningly beautiful route – but long and demanding.
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