Philippine Sea

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Location of the Philippine Sea
The Philippine Sea on the map
Filipino plate

The Philippine Sea (also Philippine Sea ) is a tributary of the Pacific Ocean , located on the western edge of the Pacific. Its expansion largely corresponds to the Philippine plate . The area covers about 5 million km².


To the north, the Philippine Sea is bounded by the islands of Ryūkyū , Kyūshū , Honshū and Shikoku , which belong to Japan , to the south by Palau and in the east, the Marianas , the Volcanic Islands , the Bonin Islands and the Izu Islands form the connection to the open Pacific.

It is bordered to the west by Taiwan and the Philippine archipelago . South of Taiwan, the 320 km wide Luzon Strait forms the transition to the South China Sea , in it are the archipelagos Babuyan and Batanes . Off the Philippine main island of Luzon are numerous small archipelagos, such as the Polillo Archipelago , which delimit numerous large bays such as the Gulf of Lagonoy , the Gulf of Albay or the Bay of Lamon . The San Bernardino Strait separates Luzon from the island of Samar and forms the transition to the Samar Sea . South of Samar is the island of Leyte and the well-known Gulf of Leyte , this crosses the Strait of Surigao , which forms the transition into the Mindanao Sea. Further south is the island of Mindanao , upstream of which is the 10,540 meter deep Galathea Depth . To the south of Mindanao, the Philippine Sea borders the Celebes Sea , the border of which lies with the Sangihe Archipelago .

The islands that are not on the edge, but in the middle of the Philippine Sea, include the Daitō Islands and the centrally located atoll Okinotorishima . A borderline case is the island of Nishinoshima west of the Bonin Islands, which on the one hand lies on the same ridge as the volcanic islands, but the Philippine Sea is limited in this area by the Bonin Islands 130 km further east.

The Philippine Sea is one of the deepest seas in the world. At its western edge it is crossed by the up to 10,540 m deep Philippinengraben , which until 1970 was believed to be the deepest point on the earth's surface. Today it is considered a place in the Mariana Trench .


In 1521, with Ferdinand Magellan's expedition, the first Europeans reached the Philippine Sea.

During the Second World War , a major air / sea battle between Japanese and American forces took place here in the Battle of the Philippine Sea in June 1944 .

Individual evidence

  1. Archived copy ( Memento from August 20, 2009 in the Internet Archive )

Coordinates: 18 °  N , 134 °  E