Tuvalu, formerly known as the Ellice Islands, is a Polynesian island nation located in the Pacific Ocean, midway between Hawaii and Australia. It comprises 3 reef islands and 6 true atolls.
Its nearest neighbours are Kiribati, Nauru, Samoa and Fiji.
At just 26 square kilometres Tuvalu is the fourth smallest country in the world, larger only than the Vatican City at 0.44 km2, Monaco at 1.98 km2 and Nauru at 21 km2.
The 3 reef islands are Nanumanga, Niutao, Niulakita and the six true atolls are Funafuti, Nanumea, Nui, Nukufetau, Nukulaelae and Vaitupu.
The highest elevation is 4.6 metres above sea level on Niulakita, which gives Tuvalu the second-lowest maximum elevation of any country (after the Maldives).