The area around Nelaug is very nice for walking / hiking / fishing / bathing / camping / canoeing / biking. But there is no campsite here, find your own spot, for instance the islands in Nelaugvannet (Nidelva).
NB. You have to pay a tax for fishing, ask at the railway station, or check the linked site (Norwegian)
Nelaug is a good starting / ending / stopping point for bicycling:
- There is a marked trail to Arendal, with almost no motorized traffic, and mostly downhill.
- In the area between Nelaug and Vegårshei there are several smaller roads, and from Vegårshei you can continue to Gjerstad and Brøsjø, or go down to Risør on the coast.
- From Nelaug it is 23 km to the community center Åmli, which again gives you a lot of possibilitiess; via Øy to Gjerstad and Brøsjø or to Treungen and Nisser are two of them. In Åmli and around Treungen you can find different kinds of accomodation.
The cost of bringing a bike on the train is 10% of a full ticket, min. NOK 55, and you have to make a reservation ahead.
I have not made any of these trips yet, but after having been in some of these places (and writing about some of them here on VT), I have decided to go, and when I do, I will write travelogues about the trips :-)
This is an overview in Norwegian of where to buy fishing licences in the area:
Stuten Kafé in Vegårdshei serve pizza and beer, and they have an ala carte menu. Nelaug -Vegårshei is a nice 27 km ride by bike or car, road 412, right onto 415, left onto 414 (or you could choose some of the smaller roads along the railway line).
The other possibility is to go to the community center Åmli, road 412, left onto 415, right onto 41.
Nelaug is heavy trafficated ;-) The Sørland Railway Line between Stavanger / Kristiansand and Oslo stops here, and there is a local line from Nelaug to Arendal.
There are two bus lines: To / from Tvedestrand and a line between Arendal and Vrådal with a connection to Seljord.
Nelaug Station opened in 1935, and is situated 281,41 from Oslo, 141,1 meters above sea level. They sell fishing licences, rent out canoes and serve you coffee for free there, the only thing they do not do, is to sell tickets! You must buy them on another station, on the web or onboard the train.
It is more like a convenience store, but with a post office. This is your only chance to get something to eat. there are no reataurants here!
What to buy: Foodstuff, stamps, toys, plugs, ... A little of everything.
Opening hours: 9 - 17 on weekdays, saturdays ?, sundays ?
What to pay: More than average