To the north and south of the volcanic ring plain around Mt Taranaki (Taranaki Maunga) are a series of marine terraces or wave-cut platforms, formed by land uplift and sea-level fluctuations over the last 700,000 years. This aerial view of the coast south of Tongapōrutu shows the narrow platform of one of the youngest terraces – about 120,000 years old – and its fossil sea-cliff. Successively older terraces reach up to 20 kilometres inland. The many rivers flowing from the inland hills have cut deeply into the terraces.
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Natural Sciences Image Library of New Zealand
Photograph by G. R. Roberts
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