I recently bought this great kit:
$40 for an ARM Cortex M3 microcontroller plus a color LCD touchscreen!
You don't need a programmer to start playing with it, as all STM32 chips come with a software bootloader, allowing for firmware uploading through UART.
Setting up a development environment is a bit complicated, but I've managed to get it working using the free Yagarto toolchain and a modified Makefile from this project.
Before I bought it, I found out on their site (http://www.powermcu.com/) that they are selling a new revision of the board (http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?id=5717559340) for almost the same price, so i asked them how much it would cost me, they said that it's gonna be $10 more.
I decided to buy the cheaper one on eBay and, to my surprise, they sent me the new one! :D
So here is my awesome ARM devkit running a preprogrammed demo: