Map of the Philippines showing all the regions and their provinces
A region (rehiyon in Filipino) is a administrative subdivision in the Philippines. As of 2002, there are 17 of them and they are further subdivided into 79 provinces (lalawigan). Regions are generally organized to group provinces that have the same cultural and ethnological characteristics.
The provinces are actually the primary political subdivision. They are grouped into regions for administrative convenience. Most government offices establish regional offices instead of individual provincial offices, usually in the city designated as the regional capital.
The regions themselves do not possess a separate local government, with the exception of the Muslim Mindanao which is autonomous.
As of 2002, the Philippines consists of 17 regions. The regions are geographically combined into the three island groups of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Following is a list of the regions in their island groupings. To get overviews of the regions, see the respective articles on the island groups.