Japan (Japanese: 日本, Nippon [ɲippoꜜɴ]) or Nihon [ɲihoꜜɴ]); officially Japanese: 日本国,Nippon-koku or Nihon-koku) is an island country located in East Asia. It is bordered by the Sea of Japan to the west and the Pacific Ocean to the east, and spans from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Philippine Sea in the south. Part of the Pacific Ring of Fire, Japan encompasses an archipelago of about 6,852 islands, with five main islands (Hokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, Shikoku, and Okinawa) comprising 97% of the country’s area.
Japan is divided into 47 prefectures and traditionally into eight regions. Approximately two-thirds of the country’s terrain is mountainous and heavily forested, and less than one-eighth of its land is suitable for agriculture. Consequently, Japan is among the most densely populated and urbanized countries in the world. The largest urban area is the metropolitan area centered on the capital city of Tokyo, which is the most populous in the world. Japan itself is the world’s eleventh most populous country.