Welcome to California Casinos

California online gambling is wildly popular, despite the state’s tough anti-gambling laws.

Head to any of California’s 67 Indian casinos for slot machines and table games. Poker fans can head to 59 active card rooms for cash games and poker tournaments. There’s horse betting at four licensed racetracks and via horse betting apps. Daily fantasy sports is alive and well in California, as are promotional sweepstakes casino, poker, and sports betting sites.

With sports betting looking like it won’t be legalized in the Nov. 8 election, these options will be California’s only legal gambling options for now and into the near future. California Casinos will keep you updated on any sports betting developments and be your guide to all things California gambling.

Trusted California Sites

We verify that sites listed on CaliforniaCasinos.com are safe and secure to play.

Top Rated California Online Gambling

Although it’s not the most gambler-friendly state in the US, there are many ways to gamble online and in-person in California.

Take your pick.

There are 67 Indian casinos and they’re all on tribal land, so laws that prevent Californians from playing slots, table games, and more don’t apply. If you’re a poker fan, there are 84 licensed card rooms in California and 59 are currently active. Of course, there’s horse race betting, which is fully legal online and in-person at the state’s four storied racetracks. Daily fantasy sports is also wildly popular in California, where sports betting isn’t yet legal.

And these are just a few of legal gambling activities California has to offer.

On this page and throughout this website, we’ll provide a thorough breakdown of all the ways you can legally gamble in California. Again, that currently does not include California sports betting, but it could soon.

$25 in Fliff Cash + 250,000 Fliff CoinsOn Sign-up – T&C’s Apply

Available in California

Pros

  • The best legal way to bet on sports in California as of October 2022
  • Make moneyline wagers on games from top sports leagues going on that day
  • Can redeem game winnings for real cash prizes

Cons

  • Limited selection of sports and leagues to bet on

Sportsbook Rating
Fliff Review


Payout Speed 1-3 Days
Bonus Package 25
Banking Options


2 Sweeps CoinsOn Sign-up – T&C’s Apply

Available in California

Pros

  • Small minimum purchases make this great for low-stakes participation
  • California’s top legal online casino
  • Excellent mobile functionality

Cons

  • Other legal online casinos have better welcome offers

Casino Rating
Chumba Review


Payout Speed 1-3 Days
Bonus Package 30
Banking Options


10 Sweeps CoinsOn Sign-up – T&C’s Apply

Available in California

Pros

  • Your bonuses get more rewarding the more you level up
  • Best legal online slots option in California
  • Easy sign-up process

Cons

  • Online and mobile products aren’t very streamlined

Casino Rating
LuckyLand Review


Payout Speed 3-5Days
Bonus Package 4.99
Banking Options


2.30 Sweepstakes CoinsOn Sign-up – T&C’s Apply

Available in California

Pros

  • Can get extra promos if you get friends to sign up
  • Offers the most amount of games for California players (more than 300)
  • Enticing VIP rewards program with six levels

Cons

  • Wasn’t on the App Store until June 2022

Casino Rating
Pulsz Review


Payout Speed 1-3 Days
Bonus Package 9.99
Banking Options


$20 Coin PackageOn Sign-up – T&C’s Apply

Available in California

Pros

  • Many novices use the site, so your competition will likely be at your level
  • Best legal online poker option in California
  • You don’t have to pay fees to redeem your real cash prizes

Cons

  • Cash prize redemption speed can lag behind other sites

Poker Rating
Global Review


Payout Speed 1-3 Days
Bonus Package 20
Banking Options


Funzpoints

250 Premium PointsOn Sign-up – T&C’s Apply

Available in California

Pros

  • Great ongoing promotions, including Premium Points giveaways
  • Excellent customer support
  • Features a low cash prize minimum to redeem

Cons

  • Doesn’t have a mobile app or table games

Casino Rating
Funzpoints Review


Payout Speed 1-2 Days
Bonus Package 4.99
Banking Options


California Land-Based Gambling

California Indian Casinos

California has 67 Indian casinos owned by 64 tribes. In total, they generate roughly $9 billion in annual revenue. They offer slot machines, table games, poker, bingo, and more.

California Card Rooms

While there used to be well more than 100, there are currently 59 operating California card rooms. They offer poker along with Cal games, which are variations of blackjack, pai gow, baccarat, and more.

California Horse Betting

California is the West Coast horse betting capital, with four of the country’s premier horse racetracks. You can bet in-person, off-track, or via a handful of online horse betting apps.

California Gambling Info

As of October 2022, there are currently six ways to legally gamble in-person and online in California:

  • Horse betting: Whether you do it at the racetrack, off-track, via simulcast at the track, or through any number of apps, it’s fully legal to bet on horse racing in-person and online in California. There are four premier racetracks in the state, too, which only helps the popularity of this gambling activity.
  • California lottery: Want to test your luck? California offers more than 23,000 locations to buy lottery tickets and scratchers. Although you can’t buy tickets online, the lottery is still massively popular in California.
  • Indian casinos: As of October 2022, California has 67 Indian casinos throughout the state. Nearly 1/3 of those, 22 casinos, are located in San Diego and Riverside counties. These casinos offer slots, table games, poker, and world-class amenities.
  • Daily fantasy sports: There are many California DFS sites to choose from, with each offering unique bonuses and perks to attract customers. DFS is technically not illegal nor legal in California, which, in effect, is the same thing as legal.
  • Play poker: There used to be well more than 100, but there are currently 59 card rooms active in California. You can play cash games and compete in tournaments. Third-party vendors also offer blackjack at card rooms.
  • Promotional sweepstakes sites: Yes, you can actually play online slots, poker, table games, and sports betting in California. How? Via promotional sweepstakes sites. These platforms are legal because, even though you can redeem for fake digital currency for real cash prizes, the digital currency, itself, has no real-world value.

    We’ll break down all six of those options in detail on this page and throughout this site. But, soon, there could be a seventh option added to this list: sports betting.

    Sports betting will be legalized in California if voters pass Prop 26 or Prop 27 this November.

    After that, it would likely be just a matter of time until real-money online casinos and online poker are on the California ballot. It’s the natural progression. The online casino operators — such as DraftKings California — would already be licensed and established if Prop 27 passes.

    However, chances are very slim either Prop 26 or Prop 27 passes this November. So, we’ll look ahead to 2024 for that.

    Online Casinos in California

    Real-money online casinos are not legal in California. So when we talk about legal online casinos in California, we’re referring to promotional sweepstakes casinos.

    These sites provide the only legal, safe way to play online casino games for a chance at real money. We strongly advise against using in illegal offshore casino, as these sites often lack quality digital security and don’t answer to any regulatory agency.

    So what exactly are legal California online casinos, otherwise known as California online sweepstakes casinos?

    Are California Promotional Sweepstakes Casinos Legal?

    Promotional sweepstakes casinos are 100% legal in California and 47 other US states. (Sorry, Washington and Idaho.) But, yes, you read correctly earlier: You can still win money on these sites. So how is this legal?

    On these sites, players play with fake digital currencies that can later be redeemed for real cash prizes. However, the currencies, themselves, have no real-world value and couldn’t be used on anything other than the casino site. The two most common fake currencies are Gold Coins, which cannot be redeemed for cash prizes, and Sweepstakes Coins (or Sweeps Coins), which can be redeemed for cash prizes.

    That may sound like the same thing as gambling with real money, but according to the letter of the law, it isn’t.

    You technically never have to spend a dime on promotional sweepstakes gambling apps or sites. These platforms often reward players with Gold Coins, the main currency, just for logging in every day. So, if you truly wanted, you could play online casino games for free for as long as your Gold Coins lasted.

    Players can get Sweeps Coins through a variety of ways, including buying Gold Coins, entering challenges, and mailing in a Sweeps Coins request. Once a player racks up a certain number of Sweeps Coins, they are able to redeem them for real cash prizes. But since Sweeps Coins, themselves, have no real-world value (you couldn’t buy groceries with Sweeps Coins), this is all 100% legal in California.

    Best Online Casinos in California

    There are plenty of promotional sweepstakes options out there. But when it comes to California, we recommend six:

    • Chumba Casino
    • Luckyland Slots
    • Pulsz
    • Funzpoints
    • Global Poker
    • Fliff

    The first four sites listed are casinos. They mainly offer a wide selection of slots. Pulsz and Chumba Casino also offer table games, and Funzpoints has Keno. All four also offer progressive jackpots that build up to significant payouts.

    Global Poker, meanwhile, is the best of the California online poker sites. It provides two main poker variants: Texas and Omaha hold ’em. In Global Poker’s case, finding people to play with never takes too long since the site operates almost everywhere in the US. Global Poker’s player pool is quite full.

    Fliff is the promotional sweepstakes version of online sports betting.

    Until online gambling becomes legal in California, these types of sites are your only choice for online poker, slots, table games, and sports betting. Since online gambling is becoming legal in other states, California may change its stance over the next few years, especially if and when sports betting becomes legal.

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    California Indian Casino Gambling

    The California casino industry is the most booming in the country thanks to the state’s Indian tribes, who run all 67 of the state’s casinos. As of October 2022, there are 67 casinos run by 64 Indian tribes. There were 66 up until August, when Sky River Casino opened in Elk Grove.

    More are on the way, too, with 10 casino projects either in the planning or construction phases.

    The casinos that already exist are largely concentrated in both Riverside and San Diego Counties, which between them include 22 casinos. Of the 10 largest California casinos, seven are in Southern California and three are in Northern California. All 67 casinos bring in close to $9 billion in annual revenue.

    The state’s newest casino, Sky River Casino in Elk Grove, just opened Aug. 16. It was originally set to open in early September, but it had a surprise opening at midnight on Aug. 16. Sky River Casino is located 15 miles southeast of downtown Sacramento. It features 2,000 slot machines, 80 table games, a 12-table poker room, a high-limit room, and 110,260 square feet of gaming space.

    Legality of California Indian Casinos and Gambling Revenue

    California tribal casinos are legal because of long-standing government pacts between the state government and Indian tribes. Basically, tribal casinos are legal because the casinos are technically not built on state-owned land.

    The Indian tribal casinos in California collectively generate over $9 billion in annual revenue every year. The National Indian Gaming Commission announced in August that California and northern Nevada tribal casinos had generated $11.9 billion in revenue in fiscal year 2021.

    As you’d expect, casino offerings can be quite different from location to location. Sizes and aesthetics vary, too, with some casinos having 5,000 square feet of gaming space and some having up to 300,000 square feet. Many California casinos feature top-of-the-line restaurants and bars, hotels, spas, golf courses, pools, and entertainment venues, hosting some of the top acts in music and comedy.

    Games Available at California Indian Casinos

    Casinos in California offer three types of games ranging from Class I to Class III. These include but are not limited to:

    • Bingo
    • Poker
    • Lottery games
    • Slot machines
    • Blackjack
    • Electronic games
    • Roulette

    There’s almost always something new to try at these resorts. Most of the Indian casinos feature California poker tournaments or private games. For example, the Morongo Casino Resort Spa offers private poker tables for high-stakes games or work retreats, which can be reserved ahead of time. Thunder Valley Casino Resort hosts a World Series of Poker tournament every fall. At Sycuan Casino Resort, you can play in the MSPT US Poker Championship events.

    You need to be 21 years old to enter many (but not all) California Indian casinos since most of them serve alcohol on their premises. There is, however, a handful of 18+ casinos in California, so chances are there will be one near you.

    Best California Indian Casinos

    Some of the best California Indian casinos include:

    CasinoLocationDetails
    Pechanga Resort CasinoTemeculaFeatures 5,400 slot machines, 152 table games, a 38-table poker room, and 200,000 square feet of gaming space — plus 20 restaurants and bars, over 1,000 guest rooms, and 13 pools and spas.
    Thunder Valley Casino ResortLincolnAlong with four-diamond hotel, features 3,400 slot machines, 110 gaming tables, a 50-table poker room, and 270,000 square feet of gaming space.
    Table Mountain Casino ResortFriantNew 600,000-square-foot casino and hotel complex opened in July 2022. It features a 110,000-square-foot casino gaming floor, bingo hall, restaurants, event center, and the hotel.
    Yaamava' Resort & CasinoSan BernandinoThe largest casino in California. Features 7,000 slot machines, 150 table games, 38 poker tables, and 290,000 square feet of gaming space, plus 17 restaurants and bars.

    California Card Rooms

    Some of the best card rooms in the country are California card rooms. As of October 2022, there are 59 card rooms operating in the state. An additional 25 have licenses but are inactive. Most feature poker, which is one of the biggest draws for card rooms. All California card rooms are well-regulated to ensure fair play.

    You can find most major types of poker within these card rooms, including Texas and Omaha hold’em and seven-card stud. Some contract with third-party vendors to offer blackjack.

    Card rooms in California strongly oppose Prop 26. This is because a provision in Prop 26 that expands the Private Attorneys General Act. That would allow tribes to hire private attorneys to sue card rooms in potentially costly lawsuits that card rooms worry could put them out of business.

    As a result, San Jose lawmakers urged residents to vote against both Prop 26 and Prop 27. San Jose is home to two of the state’s most prominent card rooms, Bay 101 Casino and Casino M8trix. San Jose is California’s third-largest city behind Los Angeles and San Diego.

    Poker Tournaments in California

    Another advantage of going to California card rooms is the ability to participate in a wide range of tournaments. For example, The Bicycle Hotel and Casino offers tournaments attached to the World Series of Poker, which normally run from November to December. Other card rooms, like the one at California’s Commerce Casino, host the LA Poker Classic, which is held from January to March.

    These card rooms also often host weekly or even daily poker tournaments with buy-ins ranging from as low as $60 to as high as around $450.

    Regardless of your skill, it’s easy to find tons of poker tournaments in California for beginners and experts with plenty of prize pools.

    Special Games Available at California Card Rooms

    Most California card rooms include special “Cal Games,” which are variations of regular casino card games that feature rules modified to fit within existing California gambling laws. Most California card rooms offer special variants of blackjack, Chinese poker, pai gow, and more.

    Best Card Rooms in California

    Card RoomLocationDetails
    Bicycle Hotel and CasinoBell Gardens185 poker tables, daily tournament schedule with buy-ins ranging from around $30 to above $90, hosts LA Poker Series tournaments
    Commerce CasinoCommerceLargest card room in the world with more than 270 tables, free poker lessons Tuesdays and Wednesdays, hosts Los Angeles Poker Classic
    Hollywood Park CasinoInglewood125 poker tables, Poker Stash Cash promo every week with $50,000 prize pool, daily poker tournaments
    Hawaiian Gardens CasinoHawaiian GardensMore than 110 poker tables, yearly World Poker Tour poker festival, expanded to 200,000 square feet in 2016

    California Racetracks

    California horse race betting is arguably the best of any state in the US, especially because it has some of the oldest tracks in the country. The first track was built in 1858. However, these days, there are four main race tracks that host the majority of racing events in California.

    Where to Watch Horse Racing in California

    Race TrackLocationDetails
    Santa Anita ParkArcadiaFamous horses like Seabiscuit and Zenyatta have raced at this track before. Santa Anita Park has a long history of hosting famous World Cups or other tournaments.
    Del Mar RacetrackDel MarRecently hosted the Breeders’ Cup in 2017. Beyond horse racing, it’s a big part of the San Diego-area community since it hosts summer concerts, county fairs, and other events all the time.
    Golden Gate FieldsBerkeleyFeatures a new tapeta racing surface and an abundance of entertaining and fine dining options. All-American tournaments and breathtaking views of the Bay Area make this venue a wonderful track to visit at least once.
    Los Alamitos Race CourseCypressRenovated in 2014, it features nighttime quarter horse racing and thoroughbred daytime racing throughout select months of the year, and notable events like local derbies and high-stakes tournaments are common.

    Is Horse Race Betting Legal in California?

    Yes, horse betting is fully legal in California, and it has been since 1933.

    The state used to be brimming with horse racetracks. However, a decline in the popularity of horse racing has caused most California racetracks to shut down. The four exceptions — Santa Anita Park, Los Alamitos Race Course, Del Mar Racetrack, and Golden Gate Fields — remain four of the country’s top horse betting facilities.

    Horse bettors have a variety of ways to wager on horse races. Straight bets are the simplest: You bet on one horse to do something, whether it’s win, place, or show. Exotic bets are more complex: They involve two or more horses across multiple races. Payouts for these are generally higher than straight bets, but they’re harder to win.

    You can bet in-person at California racetracks. But you can also find casinos, businesses, or even gas stations that have off-track horse race betting. There are 27 satellite locations in total that offer off-track betting to some extent.

    Or you can use any number of high-quality horse betting apps. TVG Horse Racing (which recently rebranded as FanDuel TV) is a good choice, as it features easy-to-navigate interfaces and 24/7 horse race streaming for both California races and races around the world.

    The minimum age for horse betting in California is 18.

    Sign-Up Bonuses for Horse Race Betting Apps

    Both apps feature excellent welcome bonuses. TVG provides a risk-free bet up to $200, while Twin Spires offers its new players $200 in site credit if you wager $800 within the first 30 days of creating your account.

    California Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS)

    Daily fantasy sports, or DFS, is a great way to legally gamble in California. DFS is similar to traditional fantasy sports, but you draft a different lineup every week for NFL and every day for NBA, MLB, WNBA, NHL, etc.

    Given the fact that sports betting isn’t legal in California, it might seem odd that residents can bet on DFS. And actually, DFS technically isn’t legal either. But it’s 100% allowed in the state because it’s not illegal. If something is neither legal nor illegal, that is, in effect, the same thing as legal.

    So, yes, DFS operators have been in California for years, and they will be for years to come.

    Is DFS Legal in California?

    Again, technically no. But that really doesn’t matter, because DFS also isn’t illegal in California.

    So, major DFS operators like DraftKings DFS and FanDuel DFS will continue to offer their products in California. They do this by referencing a clause in the 2006 Unlawful Internet Gambling Act. In brief, this allows both operators to provide DFS gambling since DFS can technically be seen as a game of skill instead of a game of chance.

    There have been no major attempts to shut DraftKings and FanDuel down or prevent them from offering DFS in California. Both of these operators have the majority of DFS players shared between them, and the DFS market in California is the largest in the US overall.

    Best DFS Apps in California

    DFS AppBonus Offer
    DraftKings DFS$20 free on deposit + 20% deposit match up to $500
    FanDuel DFS$5 free on sign-up + 20% deposit match up to $500
    Monkey Knife Fight DFS$5 free on sign-up + 100% deposit match up to $100
    Jock MKT100% deposit match up to $100

    California Lottery

    The California Lottery has been around since 1984, when voters were literally so hungry for a lottery that they passed a ballot initiative specifically to add one. Since then, the California Lottery has hatched many games to play, including MEGA Millions, Fantasy 5, Super Lotto Plus, Daily Derby, and Scratchers.

    As of October 2022, you cannot purchase lottery tickets or scratchers online. You can’t even claim your winnings online. You can, however, submit your code online for the Second Chance promotion, where non-winning scratchers qualify for a $15,000 prize.

    In terms of buying tickets or claiming winnings, you can only do all of that at certified Lottery retailers in California. Those 23,000 statewide locations include just about any gas station, pharmacy, or convenience store you can imagine.

    Out of every dollar spent on the California Lottery, 95 cents go toward funding public schools and colleges, as well as prizes and retail compensation.

    What’s the Latest With California Casinos?

    For all news related to California gambling, casinos, sports betting, legislation, and everything in between, head to our California gambling news page.

    Below, we’ll have a running updates section on what California’s Indian casinos are up to. These will be brief updates, though. Again, for all details and more information, head to our news section.

    California Gambling FAQs

    Is there online gambling in California?

    Yes, there is legal online gambling in California, although there aren’t as many options as in other states. Real-money online casinos are illegal. So is online sports betting, but that could change if California voters pass Prop 27 this November. The legal options are horse betting, daily fantasy sports (DFS), and promotional sweepstakes casino and poker sites.

    Can you enjoy legal sports betting in California?

    No. Sports betting is not legal in California as of October 2022. However, California voters can change that this November. Prop 26, which would allow in-person sports betting at California’s tribal casinos and horse racetracks, and Prop 27, which would allow online sports betting, are both on the November ballot. If one passes, that measure will go into law. If neither pass, interest groups will try again in 2024. If both pass, the courts might need to step in and help sort out what goes into law.

    How is gambling regulated in California?

    California Indian casino gambling is regulated for the most part by the National Indian Gaming Commission. The California Horse Racing Board handles horse betting in the state. Daily fantasy sports is not regulated, as it’s neither legal nor illegal. (So we suggest you use reputable operators, such as DraftKings DFS and FanDuel DFS.) Promotional sweepstakes casino and poker sites are regulated by the Malta Gaming Authority.

    Why are so many forms of gambling illegal in California?

    California still has many laws in effect from anti-gambling legislation that swept across the country decades ago. Essentially, games of pure chance are illegal in California if real money is being wagered. Card rooms and horse betting are both legal because patrons are betting against each other, not the house. Promotional sweepstakes casino and poker sites are legal because players play with fake digital currency that can later be redeemed for cash prizes. And Indian casino gambling is legal because tribal reservations are not subject to California laws.

    Why is card room gambling legal in California?

    It’s legal to gamble at a California card room because players play against each other, not the card room itself. In fact, the card room only makes money because it charges a fee for players to play poker there. There are currently 59 active card rooms in California — 35 in Southern California and 24 in Northern California. There used to be well over 100.

    How do California horse racetracks make a profit?

    California horse betting is legal because racetracks use something called pari-mutuel betting. Essentially, that means the racetracks takes a percentage of the winnings from each bet — no matter what. So a patron is never betting against the house, or racetrack in this case. Like they do in card rooms, bettors wager against each other at California horse racetracks.