There used to be only a few choices of stains for decks. Now we have a variety of deck stain types and many colors to choose from. You still have the option to treat a deck with a oil base stain. But with the newer water base stains with UV protection. Which helps to keep that color you picked out brighter and more resilient longer. If you want that solid or transparent color than that is usually what you want to use on your deck. For that cedar deck of yours where you want to see that beautiful wood that you spent the extra money to get. You will want to go with a clear deck sealer.
Most decks need a railing by code and they need to be strong enough to hold any adult. So you want to preserve those wood railings as good or better than your deck. Wood railings you can either stain them or use a good exterior paint. It all depends on the preference of the look and color you are going for. You also have the options of a composite, metal or pvc railing. One nice thing about the composite and pvc railings are that they are maintenance free.