Wood Stain or Varnish

I have just stripped a bannister in my home. It is made of pitch pine and has a very fine grain. Should I varnish it or use some sort of oil?
Andy
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.