Corresponding author:    Tullu FS , Received: 6/9//2022 | Accepted: 12/9/2022 | Published: x/9/2022

Abstract: One of Ethiopia's national parks, Abijata-Shalla Lakes is renowned for its tourist attractions as well as its conservation of biological variety, including birds. Large numbers of tourists from domestic and various countries visiting the park as a result of its tourism amenities. However, the park is seriously threatened by locals' competition for subsistence farming. Policy-makers and local planners require recreation visit demand and based on its number of visits and determinants of the park visitor's information in order to distribute the park resource effectively in the absence of a perfect market. With the use of data gathered from 99 visitor samples in the park, a structural questionnaire, and an analysis of count data from a Poisson econometric model, this article set out to estimate the demand for recreational visits and its drivers. According to the data, there were 1.7 visits per individual on average per year. The average consumer surplus per tourist was determined to be $ USD  3,107.00. The recreational value of all on-site visitors was calculated to be $ USD  40.4 million in 2021. The park's estimated net current non-market recreational demand over the next 20 years was $ USD  0.6 billion. Regression analysis results indicated that monthly income, experience, and attitude toward the site were positively impacted whereas visitor travel costs, family size, and the existence of replacement sites were negatively impacted. Therefore, while developing park recreation policy, the recognized elements that have an impact on the Park should be taken into account. Additionally, the park's annual income was only 3% the value of the services used by visitors. As a result, it is feasible to boost the park's earnings even further. It's crucial to improve park conservation efforts in order to achieve the desired tourism and conservation goals.

 

Keywords: Recreational demand; Travel cost method; Poisson regression; Ethiopia