The basics of AWS Regions and Availability Zones
We’re going to treat this article as a sort of AWS 101 — it’ll be a quick primer on AWS Regions and Availability Zones that will be useful for understanding the basics of how AWS infrastructure is organized.
We’ll define each section, then clearly list the current availability, and sprinkle in some best practices as well.
And don’t worry if all this comes too fast — if you’re new to AWS you can check out our AWS Fundamentals Learning Path to get you on a structured plan with hands-on AWS experience.
What are AWS Regions?
AWS Regions are separate geographic areas that AWS uses to house its infrastructure. These are distributed around the world so that customers can choose a region closest to them in order to host their cloud infrastructure there. The closer your region is to you, the better, so that you can reduce network latency as much as possible for your end-users. You want to be near the data centers for fast service.
What AWS Regions are currently available?
As of November 2019, there are 23 AWS Regions:
US East (Ohio)
US East (N. Virginia)
US West (N. California)
US West (Oregon)
Asia Pacific (Hong Kong)
Asia Pacific (Mumbai)
Asia Pacific (Osaka-Local)
Asia Pacific (Seoul)
Asia Pacific (Singapore)
Asia Pacific (Sydney)
Asia Pacific (Tokyo)
Middle East (Bahrain)
South America (Sao Paulo)
AWS GovCloud (US-East)
AWS GovCloud (US-West)
What AWS Regions have the most services?
Not all regions are created equally. These regions have more services than others in their general areas:
Americas: US East (N. Virginia), US West (N. California)
Asia Pacific: Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo
EU: Frankfurt, Ireland
Best practices for choosing AWS Regions
In general, try to follow these best practices when you choose a region, to help ensure top performance and resilience:
Proximity: Choose a region closest to your location and your customers’ location to optimize network latency.