Posts Written OnJuly 2016

LWIF EP45: Tokyo’s Volcano Island: Oshima

Did you know that Tokyo has a volcano island where you can visit an active volcano in the morning and go snorkeling in the afternoon? The place is called Oshima Island. Thanks to Tokyo Islands for sponsoring our trip. You can book a ferry to Oshima – or any of Tokyo’s islands – at I was quite surprised when I first found out that Tokyo has a chain of subtropical islands to the south. Last year, we went to Shikinejima and Niijima. Niijima had a gorgeous white sand beach, while Shikinejima was a tiny island with fantastic little inlets…

LWIF EP44: What a Japanese Living Room is Like

Since everyone showed us what they’re living rooms were like, we’re now going to show you what our Japanese living room is like. We looked at a lot of new homes before we bought this one, and this is quite a large living room / dining room / kitchen floor plan. It’s 十八畳 (18 tatami mats) big, which is roughly 30 m² (323 ft²). I’d say the average that we’ve seen is more around 15 tatami mats, which is roughly 25 m² (269 ft²). Keep in mind, this is for the LDK area (which stands for living room, dining room,…

LWIF X EP12: Energy Use in Japan

Japan uses roughly 1/2 the energy per capita than the United States or Canada. But why is this? I explore the different energy uses and how Japan differs, from home sizes, to heating and cooling, to public transportation, to cost of electricity and gas.