Japan is an East Asian country located in the Pacific Ocean. It is bounded to the west by the Sea of Japan, to the north by the Sea of Okhotsk, to the east by the North Pacific Ocean, and to the south by the East China Sea. It is a mostly mountainous archipelago of 14 125 islands, the five largest of which are Hokkaidō, Honshū, Kyūshū, Shikoku and Okinawa. The highest peak is Fuji, a volcano that has been dormant since 1707. With a population of around 126 million, it is the eleventh most populous country in the world. The Greater Tokyo Area, which includes Tokyo and several nearby prefectures, is the largest metropolitan area in the world with more than 38 million residents.

The country was long dominated by feudal lords and the samurai warrior caste, then by the bakufu until 1867, when it became a limited parliamentary empire. Japan is the third largest economy by gross domestic product and the fourth largest by purchasing power, as well as the fourth largest exporter and sixth largest importer globally. It is also a member state of the G7. Japan has a modern military used for self-defense, peacekeeping missions and to aid allies abroad in accordance with the Constitution. It ranks nineteenth in the world for human development and boasts a very high quality of life.