This paper investigates the recreational economic value of bird watching in the Kuscenneti National Park (KNP) at Lake Manyas, one of the Ramsar sites of Turkey and an important endangered species habitat. The lake and KNP provide considerable benefits for the region although they have faced many environmental conflicts due to diverse stakeholders needs. An economic valuation for the benefits provided by the KNP is important data for stakeholders and local authorities. The travel cost method is used to estimate recreational demand for the KNP. The recreational value of the KNP is 103,320,074 USD annually. Results shed light on important policy issues and help to resolve conflicts among stakeholders. This calculated value is considerably higher than the annual investment and operation expenditures of the KNP. Sustainability of the important species around the lake could be achieved if the regions's inhabitants are compensated by KNP visitors. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.