Are you looking to combine your love of gambling and travelling into one?
Check out our list of the top gambling destinations and find out which places offer the best of both worlds.
Las Vegas, Nevada
The first thing that one thinks of when we speak about famous gambling cities is Las Vegas.
Sin City, with its 167 casinos, perfectly embodies the world of gambling. The Las Vegas Strip has it all—the glitz, the luxury hotels, the extravagant entertainment and most importantly, all the casino games you can think of.
Las Vegas is home to some of the most popular casinos in the world, including the iconic Caesars Palace, the prestigious Bellagio and the lavish Venetian. All of these Vegas casino attractions present gambling enthusiasts with a wide range of games, from slot machines and craps to Pai Gow Poker and Baccarat.
Despite being known as the gambling capital of the world, gaming and gambling actually account for less than half of casinos’ revenue. The rest is covered by accommodation, food and drinks as today dining, shopping and partying have become just as integrated into the Vegas experience as gambling itself. In fact, Las Vegas is considered a “foodie heaven” and rated as one of the top ten places to eat on the planet.
Vegas sees over 41 million visitors a year. While some come to see the brightest spot on Earth or tie the knot (nearly 300 weddings take place in Vegas daily), almost all come to try their luck and win big under the million lights of Sin City.
When it comes to Nevada gambling towns, Vegas may be the most popular, but it’s not the only one.
Located near Lake Tahoe, Reno has about 20 casinos that annually bring in half a million in gambling revenue. Although not technically defined as casinos, the city also has numerous establishments like gas stations and bars equipped with slot and video poker machines.
Among all these places to gamble, the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino is the biggest. Taking up 107,272 square feet, this casino has 500 slot machines, almost 50 table games, and one of the biggest poker rooms in the area.
The Peppermill might be the biggest and possibly best place to gamble in Reno, but the Grand Sierra Casino is the favourite of sports bettors. The sportsbook in this casino takes up an impressive 14,174 square feet and has a capacity of 700 people. It also has over 100 TV screens and VIP boxes where players can place a wager on any sport, from hockey to boxing.
Aside from the casino travel vibe, Reno is a great destination for nature lovers. The Biggest Little City is one of the sunniest places in the US, and it has the biggest number of ski resorts, so there is something for every season.
Monte Carlo, Monaco
If you are looking for a classy gambling experience with a strict dress code where you will feel like James Bond, Monte Carlo is the place to go.
This gambling city oozes prestige and opulence as it has more rich and glamorous people than anywhere else in the world. Despite the affluence in the air, Monte Carlo is not a gambling destination reserved just for high rollers. Bettors can still make one-cent minimum wagers as well as play high-stakes games.
There are currently four casinos in Monte Carlo, with a total of 985 gaming and slot machines. The most popular is the historic Casino de Monte Carlo, which welcomes thousands of visitors every year and has hundreds of employees, including a woodworker and a tapestry and embroidery specialist who build and maintain the gambling tables.
The Grand Casino in Monaco is also the most imposing building in the principality, prompting over seven million tourists to take selfies in front of it every year.
Some of the most popular games that you can play in the casinos in Monte Carlo include the classics like roulette, craps and blackjack, as well as international card games like Trente et Quarante and Chemin de Fer.
Here is a bit of casino trivia you probably didn’t know about the gambling capital of Europe—the residents of this small state are not allowed to gamble or even enter casinos. This law is put in place to protect the Monegasques from developing a gambling addiction.
The Betting and Gaming Act 1960 that legalised gambling in the UK has led to the development of an industry worth over 14 billion pounds today and has turned London into a gambler’s paradise.
Unlike some of the other gambling towns on our list, London does not have a large number of hotels and casino resorts; it is more a city of standalone establishments. There are currently 27 casinos in the capital, which house over 712 slots machines and attract almost 6 million players every year.
The biggest casino in London is the Empire Casino, a landmark of luxury and style. This magnificent casino in central London, which used to be a ballroom and a theatre, has 127 slot machines and 50 table games, so anyone is sure to find their niche.
The Hippodrome Casino is another unmissable gambling venue. It may not be the biggest, but it is one of the best and most popular casinos in London. This huge establishment, which is actually three casinos in one, takes up five floors of the former music hall in the heart of the West End. In addition to the impressive decor and high-ceiling gambling halls, the Hippodrome Casino has 20 poker and 18 roulette tables, plus 20 different slot machines.
Despite the variety of games on offer in London, the classics like roulette, blackjack, and three-card poker are still the most popular.
Macau, the only gambling city in China where casino games are legal, has quickly surpassed Las Vegas as the casino capital of the world. The thriving gambling business in this wealthy Chinese territory not only makes up half of the region’s economy it also generates more income than Sin City.
This ‘mecca’ for gamblers, as it has been called lately, has 41 high-end casinos to choose from along the Cotai Strip, run by just six licensed operators.
If you are looking for the best Macau casino, the Venetian should be your number destination. With 550,000 square meters of casino gambling space, around 3,400 slot machines and approximately 800 gambling tables, this venue is the second biggest casino resort in the world.
Slot machines are by far the most popular and most numerous games in Macau, with several casinos in the city having over 1000 slots on their premises. Others include baccarat (more than half of the table games are baccarat), blackjack and Fan Tan (a particular favourite among visitors from mainland China). In addition to gambling in casinos, players can also bet on horse and dog races.
Macau is more than a top casino city for travellers; it’s also a great place to live. Since the government makes a huge profit from casino taxes, it awards each permanent and non-permanent resident with £809 and £485 a year, respectively.
Atlantic City, New Jersey
This resort and casino city is the most popular destination on the East Coast and one of the best places to gamble in the US. In fact, Atlantic City was proclaimed the best gambling destination in the world in 2015, beating gambling spots like Vegas and Monte Carlo to the top.
Even though gambling in Atlantic City has been a thing almost since the city was conceived, the first casino wasn’t opened until 1978, two years after the state of New Jersey legalised gambling. The Resorts International (called Resorts Atlantic City today) was the first casino to open in AC and also the first in the US outside Nevada.
When it comes to Atlantic City gambling venues, the Borgata Hotel Casino takes the number one spot as the biggest and possibly the best place to gamble. This upscale casino has the biggest poker room in AC (85 tables), as well as 3,400 slot machines and over 180 other game tables. If slots are your game, the Borgata is the perfect place to play, as this casino has one of the highest slot payouts in the city.
Despite its struggles, AC is a dynamic town with a lot to offer. With its beautiful hotels, world-class casinos, elegant restaurants, and historical sights, it is a great getaway for all gambling fans. Plus, players can enjoy some of the world-famous saltwater taffy while waiting for their bet to pan out.
Cape Town, South Africa
Cape Town may be known for its stunning beaches and breathtaking mountain views, but this gorgeous South African city is also one of the world’s most popular casino destinations.
Cape Town boasts a great blend of gambling venues and tourist attractions, so players, sightseers and beachgoers will find something to enjoy. Punters can choose from several casinos located in and around the city, as well as a great number of racetracks and sports betting establishments.
Those looking to combine casino games with some fun and leisure should head to the GrandWest Casino and Entertainment World, South Africa’s largest entertainment complex. There are 2,500 video poker and slot machines and 80 premium table games in this casino in Cape Town, spread across 120,000 square meters of gaming space. The complex also has a ton of restaurants, night clubs and sports bars—in short, everything you need for the perfect night out.
In addition to roulette, baccarat, craps and blackjack, local and visiting players to Cape Town can also enjoy poker games, the most popular being No Limit Holdem and Texas Hold’em.
Aruba is an island in the Caribbean with a rich gambling culture— the ideal combination for punters looking for a tropical getaway.
Often referred to as the “Las Vegas of the Caribbean”, Aruba has twelve casinos, some of which are part of the island’s major resorts, while others are standalone gambling facilities.
The Stellaris Casino, located at the Aruba Marriott Resort, is the largest venue on this island. Covering 15,000 square feet, this Aruban casino has something for everyone— from 32 gaming tables and more than 500 slot machines to bingo and blackjack.
For those who want to see Aruba and do some sports betting on the side, the Excelsior Casino is well worth the visit. In addition to a high-end sports betting area, this casino also has the biggest poker room on the island.
Aruba’s casinos provide visitors with classic games, from blackjack and roulette to Caribbean Stud Poker (which originated in Aruba) and baccarat.
Most of the Aruba gambling venues are open 24/7, which means that you can spend the day on the beach and then play the night away in the island’s high-end casinos. Plus, the majority of Arubans speak at least four languages, including their native Papiamento, English, Dutch, and Spanish, so it’s quite easy to get around. Doesn’t that sound like one of those gambling vacations we all dream of?
Marina Bay, Singapore
This city-state is relatively new to the gambling world as it only legalised casinos in 2006. Yet, Singapore is one of the top gambling cities on the planet, right up there with Vegas and Macau.
What’s more, it is home to the most expensive casino in the world, Marina Bay Sands.
This $5.7 billion-worth casino resort complex stretches on nearly 40 acres of real estate and includes a deluxe hotel, a museum, theatre, multiple restaurants and bars, and a spectacular rooftop infinity pool. However, the crowning jewel is the Marina Bay Casino, which covers four floors and a gaming space of 160,000 square feet.
This impressive establishment has 2,500 slot machines on the first three levels and 700 gaming tables located over all four levels. Gamblers will find baccarat, roulette, sic-bo, Singapore stud poker, and the simple to play Money Wheel among 13 variations of table games available. Also, for those who want the VIP experience, the casino offers over 30 private gaming rooms. With all these amenities, it’s no wonder the Marina Bay Casino attracts 150 high rollers a week.
Like Monaco, Singapore also tries to protect its citizens from problem gambling. To that end, residents of this state are required to pay a fee of $100 every time they visit a casino.
Blue skies, sandy beaches, crystal-clear waters and luxury casino resorts—you can easily find all this and more in the Bahamas.
Gambling in the Bahamas has been legal since 1969, so it’s not surprising that its biggest city is one of the best gambling locations in the Caribbean.
Nassau has several casinos worth visiting, although none as grandiose as the Atlantis Resort Casino. This complex has 100,000 square meters of casino space, equipped with 90 table games and 850 machines. The Atlantis also has an excellent sportsbook allowing players to bet on anything from horse racing to American national sports.
Another gambling facility tourists should not pass up on their beach and casino vacations is the Baha Mar Casino. This one is the biggest of all casinos in Nassau and offers games for everyone from casual gamblers to high-rollers. There are 150 table games and over 1,500 slot machines spread across over 9,000 square meters of gaming space. At Baha Mar, bettors can find 18 various table games such as blackjack, roulette, baccarat and craps. And if you get tired of playing, you can enjoy a game of golf on the 18-hole course, take in the scenic ocean view, or treat yourself to an exquisite dining experience at one of the many upscale restaurants.
Before You Plan Your Tour of the Gambling Capitals of the World
The top gambling destinations in the world offer much more than games and slot machines. Catering to high rollers and penny gamblers alike, these casino cities mix in fine dining, luxury accommodation and premium entertainment to provide all visitors with the best possible casino adventure. So the next time you’re planning a holiday, think of these fascinating destinations. You might not beat the house, but you will certainly win an unforgettable experience. And if of course, if you find travelling to be burdensome, you can always check out our list of the best betting apps in the UK – no travelling needed as you can do it from the comfort of your own home.