King Narasimhadeva I, the great ruler of the Ganga dynasty had built this temple, with the help of 1200 artisans within a period of 12 years (1243-1255 A.D.). Konark temple was initially built on the sea bank but now the sea has receded and the temple is few kilometres away from the sea. The Sun Temple of Konark is gigantic so also the stories & myths associated with it are many.
The most popular theory associated with Konark temple is its magnets & the floating idol in the air. The uniqueness of the Sun Temple of Konark lies in the fact that it was built with an architectural setup of various magnets. During the construction of the main tower of the temple the artisans put an iron plate between every two stone pieces. There is a lodestone at the top of the temple was said to be a massive 52 ton magnet. According to legend, the statue of the Sun God inside the temple was built of a material with iron content and was said to be floating in air, without any physical support, due to the unique arrangements of the top magnet, the bottom magnet and the reinforced magnets around the temple walls. The placement of the main temple and the Sun God had been aligned in such a way that the first ray of the Sun from the coast would cross the Nata Mandir (Dancing Hall) and would fall & reflect from the diamond placed at the crown of the Sun God.
Other legends state that, the magnetic effect of the lodestone was so strong that it caused disturbance in the ships compasses those passed by the coast (Konark being a major port at that time), thus making the navigation very difficult for the sailors. To save their trade and their ships, the Portuguese sailors destroyed the temple and took away the lodestone. The removal of the lodestone leads to the collapse of the main temple structure (shown as 'DEUL' in below image).
If you visit Konark temple and hire any guide for your help then they will explain you above legends and stories. But neither there are any historical records against these stories nor any record against the existence of such powerful magnet at Konark. Till now no one knows where the magnet is and whether these stories are true. Let me iterate it again that the current visible structure of Konark Sun Temple is the entrance to the main temple structure and the main temple structure is already destroyed and only remains are available at the same spot. Please click here to read various reasons behind the fall of konark Temple structure.