The Konark Dance Festival (KDF) has been held in the poetic sands of Konark, since the last 32 years unabated, when it commenced in 1986. Within the dates of 1st to 5th December every year, Konark experiences a surge of tourists and art enthusiasts alike, to envision the biggest and the grandest of dance festivals in the state. Held in the open air auditorium which overlooks the much acclaimed Sun temple of Konark, the festival enthralls and bewitches the people who visit from far and wide.
Apart from being the one of the greatest tourist events of the state, the festival serves as a platform for classical dancers in India to showcase India's cultural depth. The leading exponents and dance enthusiasts of almost all main classical dance forms of India-including Odissi, Bharatanatyam, Manipuri, Kathakali, Kathaka, Kuchipudi and Sattriya take part in the five-day classical dance carnival much adding to the appeal of the event
Complementing the dance and music in the air, a Crafts Mela is held at the Urban Haat, Konark during the festival that displays and sells beautiful sculptures and souvenirs made by the expert craftsmen of the region. The International Sand Art Festival, organized at Chandrabhaga Beach, Konark during the same days, brings all elements of Odisha's cultural heritage live at one place.