Up until the 1960s, the idea of gambling online in Canada was a gray area. However, once the government decided to allow individual provinces to determine whether or not the practice would be legal made things a bit clearer for the general public. Today, there are plenty of legal online casinos from which Canucks can choose, making things a bit simpler. It is still important for everyone to understand the laws and how they apply, though, so that they can make the best possible choices for their own interests.
All in all, gambling isn't criminalized in Canada unless a practice directly falls under some sort of criminal code, and there aren't many that apply to the pastime. However, it has been deemed unlawful for venues outside of the country to serve people within the country. There is an exception to this, though, with the Kahnawake Indian reservation that lies just within the border. Though internet venues cannot technically provide services to the country under the law, they do so anyway and no one has ever been prosecuted for doing so. Otherwise, it's up to the individual provinces to determine whether or not the practice is allowed and, if so, the establishments people choose must be based within the province's borders.
Another thing to consider is the differences in the regulations both here and in the US. In the United States, individual states are now deciding whether or not to allow the activity. Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey have all okayed it in some way, shape or form, whether for poker only or for everything. However, only people living in those states and accessing establishments based in those states are actually considered 'legal'. Someone in Iowa, for example, cannot access a Nevada site and deposit real cash. Of course, the same can be said for Canucks. Individual provinces set the laws and people who live within them must abide by the rules set forth. If you're looking for legal online casinos, then check out Golden Tiger. They offer lots of bonuses, plenty of games and the proper licensure.