The Philippines (Filipino: Pilipinas), officially the Republic of the Philippines (Republika ng Pilipinas; RP), is an island nation located in The Pacific Islands, with Manila as its capital city. The Philippine Archipelago comprises 7,107 islands in the western Pacific Ocean. The country reflects diverse indigenous Austronesian cultures from its many islands, as well as European and American influence from Spain, Latin America and the United States.
Filipinos are mostly of Austronesian descent. Some Filipinos are partly of American, Spanish, Chinese and Arab ancestry.
A former colony of Spain and the United States, the Philippines has many affinities with the Western world including Spain and Latin America due to three centuries of Spanish colonial rule. Roman Catholicism is the most predominant religion consisting of more than 80% of the population, making it the 4th largest Catholic nation in the world. Muslims, on the other hand, form a significant minority throughout the country. Filipino and English are the official languages. Around 12 vernacular languages are considered co-official in their respective provinces. However, only Filipino and English are used as the official media of instruction within the whole archipelago.