Between these two threads and the threads they link to, are a bunch of good options for mapping software, including free programs.
Welcome to the Guild ! Really, before picking a tool to use, you need to figure what style or styles you'd like to create, then see what might accomplish your first, second, whichever choice. For instance raster tools create some seriously different effects than vector ones - though there's overlap - one desired style might have a plethora of workable approaches. Do you have something specific in mind?