Tonga, officially the Kingdom of Tonga, is a Polynesian sovereign state and archipelago made up of 176 islands with a total area of 290 square miles (748 km²) that are spread over 270,000 square miles in the southern Pacific Ocean. While this small nation has a small population, it has a rather high population density of 139 people per square kilometer (360/sq mi), which ranks 76th in the world. The capital and largest city of Tonga is Nuku'alofa on the island of Tongatapu, the southernmost island group, with a population of 24,500. More than 70% of Tonga's population live on the main island of Tongatapu.
Tongans, who are ethnically Polynesian with a mixture of Melanesian, account for over 98% of the inhabitants of the country. 1.5% are mixed Tongans, while the rest are European, particularly British, mixed European or other Pacific Islander. There were about 4,000 Chinese people in the country in 2001, or 4% of the population, although riots in 2006 targeting Chinese-owned businesses in the city led to mass emigration and fewer than 300 remain now.
95% of Tonga's population is overweight, while over 60% are obese. Tonga and nearby Nauru have the highest overweight and obese populations in the world.
While many Tongans are moving to the only urban area of Nuku'alofa, village life and ties still remain influential in Tonga. The country's population has also continued to grow despite emigration away from Tonga.