For centuries the faithful have been drawn to make the 780 km (nearly 500 miles) trek across northern Spain to reach the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela and pay homage to the shrine of St James.
But for those who can’t afford the time or the effort to make the pilgrimage itself, help is at hand with the launch of a new app.
A collaboration between App Date and Iralta Films has created a virtual reality experience of the journey between Roncevales in the Pyrenees at the border with France until the lofty spires of the cathedral city.
“Camino de Santiago 360º is an interactive series, an immersive trip with which you can experience Camino de Santiago in first person,” claims the website.
The app porvides 360 degree footage of the route. Photo: Santiago 360º
“Through this App you can be a Pilgrim and discover the cultural, historical and human richness that Camino de Santiago offers. The 360º experience will allow you to choose your own journey, what to see, how and when from a unique point of view. Yours,” the company says.
Thanks to recorded footage of the route the armchair pilgrim will be able to “walk through ancient paths…visiting ruins, cathedrals, museums and chapels,” explains the website.
Virtual pilgrims will “walk” the path in the company of Antonio and Maragret who provide historical narrative and cultural anecdotes along the way.
Watch the trailer for Sanitago 360º:
The pilgrimage route to Santiago dates back to the early 9th century with the discovery of the tomb of the evangelical apostle St James in Galicia. Since then the cathedral became a major pilgrimage route and last year attracted more than 260,000 people according to the official register of pilgrims.