Wanting to be in Beijing (or some other major city) for the New Year celebration in 2014 or 2015.
Would this be a tourist friendly thing to do and how easy/difficult would getting around being an English speaker?
Beijing has a fantastic metro/subway system and it's very easy to get around. Most people don't speak English, but most signs have English on them, probably from the Olympics a few years back. There are a couple of free apps you can get for free or cheap on Beijing travel and the metro system. I haven't been there for the Chinese New Year celebrations, but I imagine that would be a wonderful time to be there. about 5 years ago