I went directly to large format as well. Not that it was a bad choice because it did force me to learn the technical aspects of mechanics and processes. I ended up buying 2 different enlargers. This was probably the biggest waist of money. However, I do still use both.
My best advice is to start with roll film. I would look for a cheap mechanical unit on ebay. I am kind of partial to the twin lens reflex cameras. Most have fixed lens that teach you learn within that fixed range. This also teaches you creative printing ideas & techniques with 6x6. You can by a Rolleicord w/ a 75mm Xenar for a song. I had bought a Pearl River TLR, which I still own, that actually takes some fairly sharp images and appears to have an accurate shutter. I paid about $60 for this new. Even the older Yashica-Mats or Minolta Autocords are good starters.
If you plan to make your own prints, a Omega B600 will work for 6x6 format & less.
I would think you could purchase a TLR & enlarger for about $250 to $350 on ebay. If you want large format, a Crown Graphic 4x5 is a good start ($200)
along with an old Omega D2 enlarger.
All this is pretty cheap. It's a starting point for "just do it". Good glass is a must though. Camera & especially enlarger.
I've since sold most of my large format equipment, ranging from a 1915 Seneca Improved 8x10 to Crown Graphic 4x5. I have retained my cheap FKD 5x7 for paper negatives & rarely use it. Today, it's just my Mamiya C330F & RB67. The Pearl River TLR also sees some action due to size/weight.
So my long-winded advice in a nutshell is: Roll film, a 6x6 format, good glass. If you want to make your own prints, any cheap enlarger in good shape & good glass. All this will still teach you the mechanics & processes on the trial & error basis as i've gone. Hope this helps!