We report a study of the Holocene coastal sediments of the Hai Phong area of the Bac Bo Plain (also known as the Red River Delta) in northern Vietnam. This is the first attempt to interpret the region's coastal depositional environments in the light of a geological model of Holocene environmental change recognising the interacting roles of Holocene sea-level change, alluvial responses to sea-level fluctuation, and tidal environment sedimentation. The coastal sediments overlie a Pleistocene land surface, and represent the Holocene marine transgression and regression. Prior to c .6000 bp , the sea rose to around or above its present elevation, converting the Pleistocene terrestrial landscape to a Holocene tidal landscape of tidal flat, channel and mangrove environments. Sea-level lowering by c .4000 bp triggered a switch in dominant sedimentary processes, allowing floodplain sediments to be deposited increasingly seawards.
The publisher's version of this article is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00049180301737