Image of Gambler's Alternative to Las Vegas

When talking about gambling, the first destination that comes to mind is Las Vegas. But what if we told you other cities in the US offer mind-blowing gambling opportunities? Would you check them out or stick to the ever-so-popular saying “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas”?

Las Vegas is the global gambling hub, attracting millions of passionate casino players from all corners of the world. However, it’s not the only gambling destination worth visiting in the US. Below are the top-notch alternatives to the Vegas Strip.

Let’s check them out together.

Atlantic City, New Jersey

Atlantic City (New Jersey), aka AC, is the second-biggest gambling destination in the US. It combines the Vegas nightlife with the East Coast charm, creating a unique gambling layout. Although the city experienced economic struggles in the 20th century, it became even stronger by legalizing gambling.

Atlantic City’s advantage is its proximity to New York, the largest city and metropolitan area on the East Coast. Such a position makes AC America’s Playground or Monopoly City.

In fact, AC was named the 2015 best gambling destination in the world, beating the usual suspects — Las Vegas and Monte Carlo. This title turned the spotlight towards AC, inviting passionate gamblers worldwide to check out the most popular land-based casinos and resorts.

So, if you’re in Atlantic City, go to the following casinos for premier gambling entertainment:

  • Borgata
  • Caesars
  • Bally’s
  • Golden Nugget

Reno, Nevada

Image of Reno, Nevada

Reno (Nevada) is often overshadowed by its neighbor, Las Vegas. Nevertheless, the “biggest little city in the world” exudes a cool, big-city vibe with Brooklyn-style restaurants, a burgeoning art scene, and a growing gambling landscape.

The neon-lit casino destination is perfect for those looking for Vegas-style gambling with a cooler climate and no crowds and noise. With 20 land-based casinos, Reno garners the attention of the most experienced gamblers.

So, if you want to experience the Vegas nightlife and enjoy breathtaking nature during the day, skip Vegas and drive several hours north to Reno.

The best venues are:

  • Silver Legacy Resort Casino
  • Eldorado
  • Atlantis Casino Resort Spa
  • Grand Sierra Resort (the largest hotel and casino complex in the Reno area)

Tunica, Mississippi

Image of Tunica, Mississippi

Tunica (Mississippi) is just a twenty-minute drive from Memphis, TN. And despite its close proximity to bigger cities, it still attracts tourists and casino fans. Although located in one of the poorest areas in the nation, Tunica boasts a glamorous and modern gambling scene with a Southern flare and hospitality.

In fact, the city owes most of its economic growth to gambling venues and activities. As of 2021, Tunica is home to six brick-and-mortar casinos, the most popular ones being:

  • Gold Strike Casino Resort
  • Sam’s Town Casino Resort
  • Hollywood Casino

Detroit, Michigan

Image of Detroit, Michigan

Michigan is one of online gambling’s front-runners, but most of its success goes to the flourishing land-based gambling scene. However, Detroit’s unique legal landscape allows it to have only three brick-and-mortar gambling venues within city limits.

Despite not being the most popular gambling destination, it offers an impressive and indulging casino experience.

Visitors can check out:

  • Greektown Casino Hotel
  • MGM Grand
  • MotorCity Casino

MGM Grand is the city’s largest casino, boasting over 3,500 slot machines, video poker terminals, and nearly 150 live tables reserved for:

Chicago, Illinois

Image of Chicago, Illinois

Many will agree that Chicago (Illinois) is an odd choice, especially since the state laws explicitly forbid casinos from operating on dry land. However, it makes you wonder how Illinois has a $2.5bn gambling revenue. Well, the answer is simple — riverboats.

Although you won’t find any casinos in Chicago, you could quickly drive down to the nearest riverboat gambling venue and enjoy an authentic experience. These establishments offer everything a regular casino does:

  • Fast-paced and action-packed slot machines
  • Live tables with professional dealers
  • Lounges
  • Bars
  • Restaurants

Los Angeles, California

Image of Los Angeles, California

When we mention LA, the first things that come to mind are Hollywood, movies, Sunset Boulevard, Beverly Hills, and celebrities. Gambling isn’t even in the top ten. However, that doesn’t mean LA lacks casino venues worth mentioning.

On the contrary — the city has a vibrant gambling scene. After all,

Los Angeles is the Entertainment Capital of the World.

However, we should point out that commercial casino-style gambling is prohibited in California, so you won’t find any typical land-based casinos.

Nevertheless, you could enjoy card games in venues like:

  • The Bicycle Club
  • Hustler Casino
  • Commerce Casino
  • The Gardens Casino

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Image of Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Florida’s Fort Lauderdale is known for its laid-back vibe. However, surrounding it are several top-notch casino venues that come to life as the sun sets on the West Coast.

You can drive 10 miles southwest to the biggest casino in the area, the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, or pop on a boat and enjoy a casino cruise.

The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino boasts a mind-blowing slot machine collection and tens of tables reserved for:

  • Poker
  • Baccarat
  • Blackjack

You can visit one of a dozen restaurants, go to a bar, or enjoy top-notch entertainment.

Foxwoods, Connecticut

Image of Foxwoods, Connecticut

Although not a city, Foxwoods (Connecticut) looks like one. The entire complex is situated in Ledyard and covers nearly 9 million square feet, making it one of the biggest casino locations in the US.

The gaming space takes up 344,000 square feet, providing gamblers with over 5,500 slot machines and more than 250 tables of:

  • Poker
  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Baccarat
  • Craps

Besides gambling, the tribal Foxwoods Resort Casino is a mecca for entertainment, concerts, and sporting events. The complex has 15 restaurants, dozens of bars, and many luxurious amenities that create a unique and lavish gambling environment.

Council Bluffs, Iowa

Image of Council Bluffs, Iowa

It may be small and peaceful, but Council Bluffs (Iowa) boasts an explosive gambling scene. Despite having just over 60,000 residents, the city is home to three big casino venues. Passionate gamblers from all over the country travel to try their hand at poker or test their luck by spinning slot machine reels.

The biggest establishment is Horseshoe Casino. It’s also the only venue with a poker room. The other two options are Harrah’s and Ameristar, riverboats that provide fantastic gambling opportunities to casual and experienced players.

New Orleans, Louisiana

Image of New Orleans, Lousianna

The final choice for US gamblers is New Orleans (Louisiana), a city teeming with history, good bourbon, and tasty gumbo. The town became a nation’s gambling center in the 19th century, and after a turbulent history and hurricanes, it became home to 5 top-notch casino venues.

Visitors can check out:

  • Harrah’s
  • Crescent City
  • Carnival Club
  • Boomtown Casino and Hotel
  • Paradise Casino

These establishments host over 4,500 slot machines and video poker terminals, and 120+ blackjack, poker, baccarat, craps, and roulette tables.


That’s it. You now have a list of the best Las Vegas alternatives with unique yet equally-exciting gambling opportunities. You don’t need neon lights, loud music, and crowds to enjoy top-notch gambling.

So, if you’re ever in the mood for a road trip, you’ll know where to go!

About the Author

Author Malik is one of the youngest members of our team and a relative newcomer to the gambling industry. His love for casino gambling came a few years ago when he got a job as a professional blackjack croupier at a local casino, while he also enjoys playing poker with his friends. Malik’s mission at CasinoUSA is to talk about the new casino sites on the block and tell you everything about their bonuses and promotions. His reviews go into the smallest of details so you can know what to expect from a given casino site before you start playing there.