Scattered between two of
Southeast Asia's main bodies of water, near
the equator, some
7,100 islands make up the Philippine Archipelago.
As one of the world's largest island-groups,
The Philippines occupies a total land area of
300,000 sq. kilometers. Eleven islands make
up 94 percent of the Philippine landmass: three
of these, Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, represent
the three principal regions in the country.
It is estimated that 1,000 of its islands are
inhabited, and less than one-half of these are
larger than .5 square kilometers.
Surrounded by the sea, the
country has one of the longest coastlines in
the world, with fishing as one of the most robust
industries. The country is also blessed with
natural resources such as timber, mickel, cobalt,
silver, gold, and copper. The northeastern part
of Luzon and mountain ranges in Mindanao also
boast of lush rain forests that offer prime
habitat for one of the largest number of diverse
species in the world.
The marine tropical climate
of the Philippines is divided into seasons:
dry and wet. The hottest month in low-land regions
is May, when temperatures go as high as 38 degrees
Celsius. The cooler months, on the other hand,
are December and January.
An average of 20 typhoons
hit the Philippines every year, striking mainly
in Luzon and the Visayas from July to October.
Situated between two of the world's most active
tectonic plates, the Philippines experiences
an average of five earthquakes per day, most
of which are imperceptible.
First time visitor to the Philippines
or Maynila, is the capital of the Philippines.
Most Indians pronounce "Philippines"
as Philip-pines (as in PINE tree),
which is wrong. It is pronounced as Philip-peens (rhymes with BEENS).
In a beauty contest telecast worldwide, the
foreign judge asked the Filipina contestant,
"How many islands does the Philippines
have?" She replied, and he was stunned,
and the world was amazed with her answer, "During
high tide or low tide?".
It was a genuine answer
as the country has 7,107 islands during low
tide, and 7,106 during high tide.
The Philippines is divided into three major
islands: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
Luzon, where Manila is located, Visayas where
Cebu is located, and Mindanao where Davao is
located. These are the three major cities and
international airports of the Philippines. The
fourth international airport is located two
hours from Manila and Clark Air field, formerly
occupied by the U.S. military, and now being
used for LCC airlines and as an export location
Metro Manila, not to be confused with Manila
which is a city within Metro Manila, has 14
cities and three municipalities in its control.
Ninety per cent of tourist land in this city.
It is located in the Luzon islands and can be
easily connected by land route of a few hours
to many cities such as Baguio, Laoag, Naga,
and Legazpi. Manila is the business capital
of the Philippines. It has expanded very rapidly
without much urban planning thereby creating
numerous concerns similar to Mumbai: infrastructure,
housing, traffic and crime.
Makati City is the pride of Metro Manila, and
comprises 70% of tourist traffic in the Philippines.
All the major Indian restaurants are located
in Makati. Malling is a must here, as the nightlife.
Cebu City is known as the Queen City of the
South and is the beach lover's tourist destination
of the Philippines. It is located in the island
of Mactan, the twin part of Cebu Island. Davao
City is the foremost southern city of the Philippines,
and is located in the biggest of the 7,107 islands
of the Philippines., Mindanao. It has access
routes to Indonesia and neighboring islands.
Other major cities are Bacolod in Negros Island,
Iloilo, Tagbilaran in Bohol, and Puerto Princesa
in the island of Palawan.
Capital: Manila (Land area -
Languages Spoken: There are two
official languages: Filipino, which is based on
Tagalog, is the national language. English is
also widely used and is the medium of instruction
in higher education. There are seven other dialects
spoken by majority of the Filipinos.
Religion: Roman Catholic 83 per
cent; Protestant 9 per cent; Muslim, 5 per cent;
Buddhist and others 3 per cent.
Land Area: 300,000 sq.km. (7,107
Population: 99.5 Million (2014 Estimate)
Coastline: 36,289 kilometers
GMT/local time difference: GMT
+ eight hours
Major Industries: Food, Petrochemicals,
Chemicals, Electronics and Electrical Machinery,
Footwear, Garments, and Beverages.
Major Exports: Processed Food,
Fruits and Beverages, IT Services, Call Center
Services, Rattan Furniture, Transport Vehicles,
Jeepney, Electronic Components, Apparel and Clothing,
and Metal products.
Major Imports: Leather, Sport
Equipment, Surgical, Rice and Food items, Textiles,
Pharmaceuticals, Perishable Fruits, Fertilizers,
Transport Equipment, Iron and Steel, Electronic
Machinery and Equipment, Cereals, Raw Cotton,
and Cotton Yarn.
Major Trading Partners: US, Japan,
Netherlands, Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia,
Germany, Republic pof korea, and China.
Major Investors: USA, Japan,
South Korea, Germany, Singapore, Taiwan, Argentina, France,