Best Casinos in North Carolina USA

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Updated on: March 24th, 2022

casinos in north carolina usaCasinos in North Carolina have fought long and hard to be established in the state. North Carolina’s government was against any kind of legalized gambling in NC. Even as late as 1982, the then-Governor Jim Hunt was against establishing a state lottery. North Carolina was the last East Coast state to create its own lotto, establishing the NC Lottery in 2005. It won the vote by the slimmest of margins and the NC Lottery sold its first ticket in 2006. That is barely 14 years ago, very late compared to other states with casinos whose gambling history that stretches back a century in some cases.

Up to the point of the introduction of the state lottery, the only casinos in North Carolina were tribal casinos and the state begrudgingly allowed its existence. With North Carolina’s historically conservative attitude towards gambling in NC, the state had compacts with the tribes in the region but severely limited the types of casino games they could offer to just slots and electronic poker. However, this changed in 2012 when the state government was looking for more funding. They expanded their compact with North Carolina’s tribes to allow more games. Currently, the estimated gambling in NC revenue is at $1.85 billion and the tax revenue generated by gambling is $506 million.

In addition to listing top USA online casinos  take a look at the laws around gambling in NC, online gambling in the state, and a list of casinos in North Carolina.

Top Online Casinos for North Carolinians

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Gambling in NC Casinos

Gambling in NC and its casinos are fairly new in the state. Given that the NC lottery was only allowed in 2005 and casinos in North Carolina could offer more gambling options from 2012, it’s still a growing activity in the state. So, in order to understand how gambling in NC is viewed, let’s take a look at its laws.

North Carolina Gambling Laws

Gambling in NC is regulated and monitored by a number of regulatory agencies as the state still hasn’t established a single entity. North Carolina defines gambling as “operating a game of chance, or playing at or betting on any game of chance at which money, property, or other thing of value is bet, whether the same be in stake or not.”

In terms of gambling age, NC Lottery minimum age is 18, 21 for entering casinos in North Carolina, and there’s no minimum age requirement for playing bingo or raffles.

Legal Types of Gambling in NC

The legal types of gambling in NC are:

  • Charity bingo and raffles
  • Lottery with Powerball and Mega Millions
  • Slots
  • Blackjack
  • Craps
  • Poker
  • Roulette
  • Video poker
  • Baccarat
  • Sports betting

Illegal Types of Gambling in NC

The illegal types of gambling in NC are:

  • Horse racing
  • Dog racing

Online Casinos in North Carolina USA

North Carolina doesn’t have any registered online casinos and online gambling in NC is considered illegal. However, daily fantasy sports (DFS) sites accept bets from North Carolina. North Carolinians can play fantasy sports on these following sites:

  • CBS Sports
  • DraftKings
  • FanDuel
  • Yahoo!

List of Casinos in North Carolina

harrah’s cherokee casino resort in north carolina usa

You’re in North Carolina and are wondering where is the closest casino near me? Well, our list of casinos in North Carolina will help you with that. Currently, there are two casinos in North Carolina and there’s a third in the works, and all are located on Native American sovereign land.

The two that are in operating in NC are run by the Eastern Band of Cherokee. They essentially run gambling in NC. At a Cherokee casino, you can expect to find all forms of casino games. From blackjack to bingo; poker rooms to sports betting, North Carolinians will have a great time at these Cherokee casinos in NC.

Casino Features Address
Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort 3,500 slots, poker, blackjack, craps, roulette, sports betting (coming soon), restaurants, hotel, spa, entertainment venue, golf 777 Casino Drive, Cherokee
Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Hotel & Casino 1,000 slots, poker, craps, blackjack, roulette, sports betting (coming soon), restaurants, hotel, golf 777 Casino Parkway, Murphy
King’s Mountain Catawba Casino (coming soon) Slots 1499 State Road 1301, King’s Mountain

Evolution of Gambling in NC

Gambling in NC was illegal until 1945, when the state allowed charitable bingos and raffles to take place. Then, in the 1990s, video poker became extremely popular in North Carolina but there weren’t any laws regulating the game. It was only in 2000 that NC state legislature decided to take action and placed a moratorium on the machines, the same time South Carolina banned video poker. The moratorium also limited the number of machines to three per venue and set the prize limit to $10.

However, laws around video poker weren’t enforced at all. The establishment of the NC Lottery in 2005 triggered North Carolina legislature’s phasing out of video poker. Then, in 2007, after much lobbying and reduction in the number of machines allowed, video poker machines were phased out of places like stores and tobacco shops.

The history of tribal casinos in North Carolina officially began in 1994 when the Eastern Band Cherokee tribe negotiated a compact with the state. When they opened in 1997, the Harrah’s Cherokee casino could only host slots that required skill, video poker, electronic table games, and keno that required skill.

In 2013, the state and the Eastern Band Cherokee negotiated a new compact which now permits live dealer table games. An interesting fact about the Cherokee casino is that no alcohol was allowed to be served for its first 16 years open. It was only in 2009 that they allowed the sale of alcohol.

Casinos in North Carolina FAQs

Is casino gambling legal in North Carolina?

Yes, casino gambling is legal in North Carolina.

Does North Carolina have casinos?

Yes, the state has casinos. There are two Vegas-style casinos in operation in the state.

What are the two casinos in North Carolina?

The two casinos in North Carolina are the Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort and the Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Hotel & Casino.

Is online gambling legal in North Carolina?

No, online gambling in NC is not legal. However, DFS sites do accept players from North Carolina.

What DFS sites accept North Carolina players?

DFS sites that are open to North Carolinians include CBS Sports, DraftKings, FanDuel, and Yahoo!.

Is video poker legal in North Carolina?

No, they were outlawed in 2006.

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