Yes, I've read a few good restaurant recommendations for Montgomery and Birmingham, as well as Nashville. However, I also like doing the "exploring thing," walking through a neighborhood + discovering a great local place on my own. Problem is, on my California to Boston cross-country journey focusing on the South, I've so far discovered a world of sprawl, but not yet a single walkable, interesting neighborhood (for instance, in other regions for better or worse: New York's SOHO; New Orleans' French Quarter; Atlanta's mid-town and Buckhead; SF's Mission; and Boston's Back Bay and South End.
Question: Between Montgomery, Birmingham, Nashville, or any towns/cities in-between, can anyone recommend neighborhoods I should explore. Any sprawl-only cities/ towns that I should explicitely skip?