Estimates of the percentages of French Guiana ethnic composition vary, a situation compounded by the large proportion of immigrants. Mulattoes (people of mixed African and French ancestry), are the largest ethnic group, though estimates vary as to the exact percentage, depending upon whether the large Haitian community is included as well.
Generally the Creole population is judged to be about 60 to 70% of the total population if Haitians (comprising roughly one-third of Creoles) are included, and 30 to 50% without. There are also smaller groups from various Caribbean islands, mainly Martinique, Guadeloupe, Saint Lucia as well as Dominica.
Roughly 14% of the population is of European ancestry. The vast majority of these are of French heritage, though there are also people of Dutch, British, Spanish and Portuguese ancestry.
The main Asian communities are the Chinese (about 3–4%, primarily from Zhejiang province and Guangdong province in mainland China) and Hmong from Laos (1–2%). Other Asian groups include East Indians, Lebanese and Vietnamese.
The main groups living in the interior are the Maroons (formerly called "Bush Negroes") who are from African descent, and Amerindians. The Maroons, descendants of escaped African slaves, live primarily along the Maroni River. The main Maroon groups are the Saramaca, Aucan (both of whom also live in Suriname), and Boni (Aluku).
The main Amerindian groups (forming about 3%–4% of the population) are the Arawak, Carib, Emerillon, Galibi (now called the Kaliña), Palikur, Wayampi and Wayana. As of the late 1990s, there was evidence of an uncontacted group of Wayampi.
The official language of French Guiana is French, and it is the predominant language of the department, spoken by most residents as a first or second language.
In addition, a number of other local languages exist. Regional languages include French Guianese Creole, six Amerindian languages (Arawak, Palijur, Kali'na, Wayana, Wayampi, Emerillon), four Maroon dialects (Saramaka, Paramaccan, Aluku, Ndyuka), as well as Hmong Njua. Other languages spoken include Portuguese, Hakka, Haitian Creole, Spanish, Dutch and English.