The first people to roam Queenstown its surrounds were Polynesians who hunted in the area around 1200AD.
Later, Maori people travelled overland to Queenstown in search of food, stone and fibre. Many came from the West Coast and used the area as a resting place. They hunted moa; large, flightless birds. The moa statue in Earnslaw Park is the closest you’ll get to seeing one in Queenstown these days; they were hunted to extinction, possibly as early as 1300AD.