Valuation of mudflats in nature-based tourism: Inclusion of perceived value of festival experiences

Youngjoon Choi, Won Seok Lee, Choong Ki Lee, John Dattilo

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


As a particular type of wetlands, mudflats are a potentially valuable natural resource that has become an alternative destination for nature- based tourism. One prominent example of using mudflats in a tourism context is the Boryeong Mud Festival. To understand the role of the touristic experience in shaping the need for preservation, this study: (a) examines the effect of experiences in a nature-based festival on visitors' willingness-to-pay (WTP) to preserve mudflats; and (b) estimates the preservation value of mudflats by using a contingent evaluation method. In particular, the perceived value of festival experiences is included in the proposed models when estimating visitors' WTP. The results indicate that the experience of festival visitors was positively associated with WTP by showing that festival visitors perceived a higher level of utility for preserving mudflats as the functional value of festival experience increased. Based on the error-reduced WTP results, the average respondents' WTP and the annual aggregate preservation value of mudflats were estimated at KRW 11,039 (US$8.64) and KRW 22,818 million (US$17.85 million), respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)833-851
Number of pages19
JournalTourism Economics
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2015


  • Contingent valuation model
  • Mudflats
  • Nature-based festival
  • Preservation value
  • Touristic experience
  • Willingness to pay


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