Raet National Park was created in 2016 to protect the special natural area which extends from the Valøyene islands off Grimstad along the entire Arendal coastal strip to Lyngør in Tvedestrand. The park covers a total of 607 square kilometres of coastal nature and sea.
Raet contains visible traces of the ice age around 12,000 years ago. When the enormous glacier that once existed in the area retreated, it left behind huge quantities of stone, sand, gravel and clay which it had picked up during its journey. This process led to the creation of a unique coastal landscape.
Raet National Park is one of Southern Norway’s most popular outdoor recreation areas, and many people visit the seaway, particularly during the summer months. Many of the islands are protected as outdoor recreation areas and as an archipelago park. The national park is ideal for kayaking, windsurfing, boat trips and walks, recreational fishing and swimming.
Sandøya is a beautiful small island community outside Tvedestrand in Southern Norway. Forbes.com visited Sandøya in 2019 and listed it as one of "11 Insanely Beautiful Lesser-Known Islands Around The World".
The cultural history of the national park is dominated by its proximity to the sea. There are four protected lighthouses in the park: Lyngør, Møkkalasset, Store and Lille Torungen.