Abstract

Non-market valuations have taken a central role in valuing sites for which markets generally do not exist. It is important to place a value on a site – recreational or archaeological – for making policies regarding preservation and others relating to it. This study uses a travel cost method to value the Takht-i Bahi archaeological site, located in the province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Primary data were collected from the visitors through a well-structured questionnaire. Various econometric specifications were estimated such as Ordinary Least Square (OLS), poisson and negative bionomial to estimate the impact of various factors on the visitation rate. The consumer surplus per person per visit was calculated to be Rs. 2132 approximately equal to 20 US dollars and the total value of the site was found to be Rs. 7,808,102 approximately equal to 74,719 US dollars. The study provides both theoretical and an empirical methods to place a value on a public site, which would help evaluate. Placing a value on a site of public interest helps to evaluate the expected revenue generated from them and provide guidance about spending on improvements and maintenance of the site. This type of study can be replicated in other areas of cultural and educational importance as policies relating to such sites increasingly depend on their accurate valuations.