The coastal landscape of the Gaeta Bay, southern Latium (Italy), is the result of a significant tectonic control expressed by a geometric segmentation of the relief and by offsets of the coastline. The structural features derived from this activity are overlain by slope and littoral morphogenetic processes. Tectonic and geomorphic processes performed in a different way along the coastal belt, producing the unequal morphological setting observed in the western and in the eastern sector of the study area. In the western sector, the Aurunci Mts. gradually reach the coast forming cliffs. On them, several emerged and submerged erosional forms such as notches and sea terraces are recognised. Embayments characterized by sandy pocket beaches wide from few hundred meters to over 2 km are in correspondence to some tectonic lines with a clear morphological expression and transversal to the coastline. In the eastern sector, the Aurunci Mts., higher and rich of karstic forms, joint to the coastline in few kilometres due to the accumulation forms developed along valleys deeply cut in the carbonate slopes. The morphological features of the investigated area permitted us to recognize the existence of differential vertical movements along a 30 km-wide coastal area clearly split in two sectors.
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