The Philippines has roughly 7,641 islands and it is surrounded by water.
Group of islands + surrounding water = the Philippines is an archipelago
Do take note of the names of the bodies of water surrounding the Philippines (which you’ll find in the next section) and its position in terms of latitude and longitude.
However — names and numbers aside — the most important point that you should take away from this lesson is that the Philippines is in a very strategic location and that this has been the thing that has led to the most significant events of our history.
Now, yes, these are oversimplifications of historic world events that are actually quite more complicated. But. The point is: everything that has happened to our country has had a lot to do with where we are located. And, for better or worse, our location is also going to have a major impact on our country’s future. We can only hope it will be a good one.
It is between latitudes 4°23′ and 21°25′ in the North and between longitudes 116°00′ and 127°00′ in the East.
It is considered an archipelago because it is made up of islands, small and large, and it is surrounded by water.
The bodies of water that surround the Philippines are:
It is estimated that the Philippines has more than 7,641 islands, which are divided into the three main island groups: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
It is close to the Asian mainland, which facilitated the migration of the native Negritos, Indonesians, and Malays, believed to be the first people to live in the country.
Its location also allowed the rapid development of trade between the Philippines and neighboring countries such as China, India, Japan, and Saudi Arabia. The Philippines became a center of distribution of products from Southeast Asia because it is along the route of sea vessels from many parts of the world. This led to the development of the country’s economy, as well as its culture.
The Philippines is also located close to the Spice Islands, or the Moluccas, which Europeans sought out in their search for condiments or spices. This led to the arrival of the Spanish in the country, which in turn led to a change in religion from paganism to Christianity, specifically Catholicism.
Spain is not the only country to have benefited from the strategic location of our country. America also came – and contributed to shaping our history – because of our location on the map. The Americans occupied the Philippines and built military bases against the invasion of Eastern countries. They used the military bases to store weapons of war; they also conducted military training here. The Philippines became a supplier of raw materials to America in exchange for protection and alliance.
The location of the Philippines also had a great influence during the Japanese period. Due to its strategic location, Japan occupied our country to make it easier for them to establish an empire throughout Asia.
The strategic location of the Philippines is also why it has become a center of communication and transportation. Some ships and planes stop first in the Philippines before continuing to travel to different countries in Asia and Australia.
In terms of culture, it is said that the Philippines is a melting pot of Western and Eastern cultures. Our ancestors interacted with people from different countries – from Asia and from other continents – bringing rich customs, industry, education, and so on.
The strategic location of the Philippines has played a big role in shaping our history and the continued growth of the Filipino race.
1. The Philippines is part of which Asian region?
a. East Asia
b. North Asia
c. Western Asia
d. Southeast Asia
2. Which of the following is the specific or absolute location of the Philippines on the map?
a. 4°23′ and 21°25′ north latitude and 116°00 and 127°00 east longitude
b. 2°43′ and 25°31′ north latitude and 161°00 and 172°12 east longitude
c. 1°32′ and 15°21′ north latitude and 131°00 and 151°10 east longitude
d. 3°23′ and 20°29′ north latitude and 121°14 and 148°25 east longitude
3. Why is the Philippines called an archipelago?
a. It faces the Pacific Ocean.
b. It consists of three large islands.
c. It is surrounded by rich countries.
d. It consists of small and large islands surrounded by water.
4. What ocean is located east of the Philippines?
a. Indian Ocean
b. Atlantic Ocean
c. Pacific Ocean
d. Arctic Ocean
5. The following were the countries that traded with the country EXCEPT?
c. Saudi Arabia
6. What islands were Europeans looking for that led to the discovery of the Philippines?
7. These are structures built by Americans to train soldiers and store their war equipment or arsenal.
a. military bases
8. As a former colony of Spain, what has been the Spaniards’ greatest legacy in the Philippines?
d. armed forces
9. The following are the direct effects of the location of our country in shaping our history EXCEPT?
a. The Philippines traded with neighboring countries.
b. The migration of natives was facilitated.
c. All of its neighboring countries became enemies of the Philippines.
d. Conquerors discovered the strategic location of the Philippines.
10. Why is it important to study the geography or location of a country?
a. To make a country famous
b. To find out how many people live in the country
c. To know who the famous people in the country are
d. To understand how different aspects of a country’s culture, economy, government and religion have been shaped