Micronesia is the name given to a group of over 600 islands in the western Pacific between the Philippines and Hawaii. While Guam and Wake Island are U.S. territories, and the Northern Mariana Islands form a U.S. Commonwealth, the remaining tiny islands that make up Micronesia are mostly independent states. The islands consist mostly of low coral atolls and some higher islands to the west, the result of past volcanic activity. The nature of the region’s geography has prevented easy access to many modern conveniences, such as electricity and running water. The population of Micronesia are heavily dependent on tourism for their income, and the arrival of foreign visitors has partly westernised the region, except for some of the outer islands which still maintain a traditional Micronesian lifestyle.