Polynesia is a group of over 1,000 islands spread across the central and southern Pacific Ocean from Hawaii in the north, to New Zealand in the south and Easter Island in the east. Polynesia is often defined as the islands within the ‘Polynesian triangle’, which is the shape made by connecting these three countries with straight lines. Despite the small size of the individual islands, the region of Polynesia covers a vast area. For example, Samoa and Tahiti are about as far apart as London and Moscow. Within the group of islands are two distinct cultures. West Polynesia has a more ordered society, with strong institutions geared towards a higher population; East Polynesia has a less-formal way of life, more suited to the smaller islands and atolls.