Japan Data Archive

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How many islands are there in Japan?

Japan is made up of about 6,800 islands, some of which are not inhabited.
The areas of Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku can be called islands, but Japanese do not refer to them as so.
When they say islands, they mean much smaller isles scattered around the main islands.
The largest of such islands is Etorofu, east of Hokkaido, followed by the nearby Kunashiri.
The next largest is Okinawa in the south, and then Sado, located north of Honshu in the Sea of Japan.