No initial injuries were reported in the incident as the Viking Line ferry sailed between Stockholm, Sweden and Turku, Finland, with a short stopover scheduled in Mariehamn.
Social media videos from witnesses on the island showed stormy waves whipping against the bow of the ship as it sat stranded against the shore.
Divers from the Finnish Coast Guard examined the hull of the stranded ship and said it did not take water or leak fuel. The passengers were told they would remain on board overnight but would be rescued Sunday.
“Tomorrow morning there will be plans to evacuate via tugboats,”
The MS Viking Grace, which measures 218 meters (approximately 238 yards) with 10 decks, was built to carry close to 3,000 passengers, but capacity on board is limited due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Viking has several ferries a day between Turku and Stockholm, which is about a 10-hour journey one way.
This is the second Viking Line ship to be grounded from the Åland Islands, a Swedish-speaking region in Finland in the Baltic Sea, in the last two months.
In September, another Viking Line passenger ferry, the MS Amorella, also ran aground on the Aland Islands. Narrow passages and shallow water are a crucial feature of the waters around the islands, making it a challenging area where large ships can be operated.