Shreveport Makes Top 5 In Best International Gambling Destinations

Posted on March 16, 2022

Malta, Monte Carlo, and Shreveport. Yes, the “Ratchet City” ranks right up there with the big hitters.

Balkan Travelers has tagged Shreveport as one of the top five gambling destinations for International Travelers in the World.

The site touts Shreveport’s oldschool charm with its riverboat casinos, spacious hotels, and proximity to the Louisiana Downs racetrack.

Louisiana natives know Shreveport for the Independence Bowl, and it’s unfortunate fandom of the Dallas Cowboys (Dallas to Shreveport is a three-hour ride). Moreover, Shreveport is also picturesque and boasts a great casino skyline.

It’s one of the best-kept secrets in Louisiana.

So Balkan Travelers has something here.

Shreveport is a great haven for gambling fans and sports bettors in Louisiana. Here are some of the attractions to check out if you’re in the northwest corner of the Pelican State.

Boomtown Casino

There’s a circular bar that sells not a margarita, but a “boomarita” and a two-floor casino with over 1,000 slot machines. Boomtown is partners with the Barstool sportsbook for all your sports wagering wants.

Horseshoe Boosier City

Think of Shreveport and Boosier City as sister cities, separated by the Red River. The Horseshoe is just on the other side of the river. It has a Vegasstyle fountain in front.

It has a special Red Star Room nightclub, the Riverdome for concerts, and over 130 video poker machines on the floor. The sportsbook is hosted by Caesars.

Bally’s Shreveport

Shreveport Bally’s used to be the Eldorado before changing hands. Bally’s has daily poker promotions and tournaments, and perhaps the best restaurant in Shreveport in The Vintage Shreveport Steakhouse.

Sam’s Town

If you want that authentic paddleboat feel, then Sams Town is for you. Sam’s Town is run by Boyd Gaming and there’s an authentic 19th Century style paddlewheel dockside riverboat casino.

The casino is open 247 and the sportsbook is operated by FanDuel.

Margaritaville Resort

Yes, this is the Jimmy Buffet, islandthemed destination. Grab your tiki drink and sit by the outdoor pool with an amazing view of the Shreveport skyline. You can check out a show at the Paradise Theatre or make a bet on the on-site Barstool sportsbook.

What were the other destinations listed?

Balkan Travellers listed Shreveport as No. 5 on its list. The top four shouldn’t be a surprise to any gambling aficionado.

  • Malta – The small Mediterranean island touts an incredible online gambling industry. The Oracle Casino is one of the biggest in the world.
  • Monte Carlo – Before there was Las Vegas in the desert there was Monte Carlo. Still a must-see location for any traveler.
  • Macau – One of the Jewels of the Eastern World. 41 gambling establishments make it the heart of the gambling world in China.
  • Singapore – Since legalizing gambling in 2005, Singapore has become a rising star with its mixture of casinos, theme parks and museums.

What’s a “Ratchet” city?

OK, let’s be honest, Ratchet isnt the nicest term in the world. You can think of it as a Louisiana-style way of saying wretched, or it can mean ‘up the tempo.” For example, a common phrase is “we’re going to ratchet it up a notch.”

Famed Baton Rouge rapper Lil Boosie came up with the song “Do the Ratchet,” and while Shreveport’s never going to officially adopt the name, people know.

This is Louisiana, hurricanes don’t break us, and words don’t hurt us. We just want to have a good time.

Shreveport deserves recognition as one of the best destinations for any type of traveler.

Photo by Sean Pavone / Shutterstock
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Darren Cooper

Darren Cooper was born and raised in Southern Louisiana, just a short pirogue ride away from New Orleans. He started his journalism career at the New Orleans Times-Picayune and has been a writer and columnist in New Jersey since 1998. He's won 14 statewide press awards and earned his first Associated Press Sports Editors Top 10 award in 2022.

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