The Republic of the Philippines is an archipelago of over 7,000 islands. Its tropical climate and volcanic islands support a variety of plants and animals, placing the Philippines in the top ten mega-diverse countries in the world.
Spain and the United States battled each other over the country in the Spanish-American war. This led directly to the Philippine-American War (1899-1902) and American dominance of the islands. The Philippines eventually achieved independence in 1946.
Today, the Philippines diverse culture is a mixture of Asian, Spanish, and Western influences.